The gangland slaying of Chicago mob attorney and racetrack mogul Edward (Easy Eddie) O’Hare was the last murder ordered by storied Windy City mafia boss Al (Scarface) Capone. Years earlier, O’Hare had been one of the star witnesses at Capone’s media-circus of a 1931 trial for tax evasion in which he was convicted and incarcerated.

East Eddie O’ Hare was shot to death behind the wheel of his brand new Lincoln automobile on the afternoon of March 8, 1939, less than a week before Capone walked free from federal prison after serving eight years behind bars. O’Hare’s shiny new black-colored Lincoln-Zephyr was riddled with shotgun fire at the corner of Ogden and Rockwell on the westside of Chicago. He was driving home from his office at Sportsman’s Park in Cicero, Illinois, a key Capone crew outpost in the west suburbs.

A new film depicting Capone’s retirement years in Florida while dealing with the loss of his mind from syphilis, begins production this spring in New Orleans. The movie, titled Fonzo, stars Tom Hardy as Capone and is being directed by native Chicagoan Josh Trank (Chronicle, Fantastic Four).

Part of the reason O’Hare decided to cooperate with the government and testify against Capone in open court, was the promise that his son Edward (Butch) O’Hare, would be admitted to the U.S. Naval Academy. The younger O’Hare went on to become a historic American war hero, receiving the first-ever presidential Medal of Honor for his combat duty flying fighter planes in World War II in the South Pacific. Killed in the line of duty over the Gilbert Islands in the fall of 1943, Chicago’s named it’s biggest airport after him in recognition of his bravery and service to the country.

Butch O’Hare shaking U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s hand the day he was awarded the Medal of Honor at the White House in 1942.

The elder O’Hare got both his start in both the legal world and the racetrack business in St. Louis. By expanding his interests in the greyhound racing industry to Chicago, Boston and Miami and helping inventor Owen Smith bring his mechanical running rabbit innovation to market, he became rich. Moving to Chicago in 1927, O’Hare met Capone due to their mutual interest in the growing field of aviation and represented him in some small matters with the law. Capone introduced him to his second wife, the sister of an associate and the pair began making business investments together.

Using a newspaper reporter from St. Louis as a go-between, O’Hare reached out to the FBI and IRS in 1930 and offered his assistance in building a case against Capone from the inside. His cooperation allowed IRS agents to break Capone’s bookkeeping-ledger codes and flip one of Capone’s main accountants, resulting in a 1931 indictment. As Capone’s trial for tax evasion began, he tipped off the government that the jury had been bought off, leading to the judge ordering a re-selection from the jury pool.

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