In this remarkable new book, Joe Broadmeadow and Brendan Doherty take you inside the investigations, covert surveillances, and murky world of informants in the war against Organized Crime.
Doherty & Joe
Broadmeadow’s new book “ It’s Just the Way It Was ” is
a gripping, in-depth, insider point of view from the lawman who saw it all. The
Federal Hill politics of the street law & order, decided with the barrel of
a gun, will never be told better… “
Ralphie Cifaretto from
“It’s Just the Way
it Was tells the inspiring story of a
principled young man who resisted the pressure of delinquency, played a crucial
role in dismantling the Rhode Island mob, and rose to lead one of the finest
state police organizations in the country.”
Col. Rick Fuentes, ret. NJ State Police (Served as Superintendent of NJSP for 16 years)
Book signings: October 11th Barrington Books Retold, Cranston, RI 6:00 p.m.
17th MCTs Tavern,
Cumberland, RI 5:00 p.m.
Brewed Awakenings, 60 South County Commons, Wakefield, RI 10:00 a.m.
“Brendan Doherty & Joe Broadmeadow’s new book “ It’s just the way it was “ a gripping in-depth, insider point of view from the lawman who saw it all. The Federal Hill politics of the street law & order were decided with the barrel of a gun, will never be told better… “
In It’s Just the Way It Was: Inside
the War on the New England Mob and other stories, Joe
Broadmeadow and Brendan Doherty take you inside the investigations, covert
surveillances, and murky world of informants in the war against Organized
Order your copy today!
“Brendan Doherty & Joe Broadmeadow’s new book “ It’s Just the Way It Was ” is a gripping in-depth, insider point of view from the lawman who saw it all. The Federal Hill politics of the street law & order, decided with the barrel of a gun, will never be told better…”
Joe Pantoliano Ralphie Cifaretto from TheSoprano’s.
October 11th Barrington Books Retold, Cranston, RI 6:00 p.m
October 17th MCTs Tavern, Cumberland, RI 5:00 p.m.
Read an except from the upcoming book by Joe Broadmeadow and Brendan Doherty. Go inside with investigators who infiltrated the mob. Sit with the detectives as they monitor wiretaps. Come face to face with some of the most notorious mobsters who stalked the streets of Providence, Boston, and New York.
Pre-order the Kindle version here, before the release date price increase.
Chapter 3 Grundy’s Gym
In 1978, Brendan walked in the door of Grundy’s Gym in Central Falls, Rhode Island. The experience here would have a lifelong impact on Brendan. Something he could never imagine when he first went in.
It was a real boxing gym, not a studio with mirrors where guys hit the
bag and brag to girls that they’re fighters. Like most hard-core boxing gyms,
it didn’t have the luxury of a quality cleaning service.
Pungent sweat, punctuated by the snap of leather on leather, engulfed
you. Grunts, groans, and the shouts of trainers added to the mix. Marinated in
the blood, sweat, and tears from years of boxers chasing glory, the building held
the echoes of dreams, despair, and determination.
It was where the thrill of victory rarely interrupted the agony of defeat.
Most guys were just happy to survive. It was all part of the less glamorous
reality of the boxing world.
Old fight promotion posters and pictures of boxers covered the walls. Fighters
who never made it to the main bout yet showed enough heart to earn a place on
that wall. Making the wall was an accomplishment, perhaps their only one, but
here it meant something.
Dried blood stains covered the floor of the ring, known as the canvas, serving
as reminders of bouts that went beyond sparring. There was no Rocky-style soundtrack
to underscore the punishing pain. The dingy walls, gray shades of age, echoed
and amplified the sounds. It wasn’t music, but it held a certain charm to those
immersed in the sport. The only color, besides the boxing trunks, was the
purplish-red splotches on bruised bodies.
This place was the real deal.
The owner, Bob Grundy, who later became like an uncle to Brendan, was a
character out of central casting for a tough guy movie. He was a Marine Raider
in World War II, fighting in the extended operation on Guadalcanal, considered
the turning point of the war in the Pacific. He came up the hard way, born and
raised in a one-room, cold-water flat in the Darlington section of Pawtucket,
He worked hard, opened his own construction company, and did well. He was
a generous man who gave back to his community. He started his gym after the
Notre Dame Boxing Club closed. Bob understood the gym was the only thing
between jail and the streets for some young men.
Bob charged no one for membership.
The gym was free if you comported yourself like a gentleman. It was an exciting
mix of characters, including ex-cons, pro fighters, cops, and con men.
If Grundy’s gym was the real deal, the authenticity came from Bob Grundy. Bob’s son, Peter, a football star at Bishop Feehan who later became one hell of a fighter, introduced Brendan to the place…
“On March 14, 1986, a dark, cold, and quiet night in Providence, Rhode Island, an ex-con with a penchant for violence, dropped into a local bar. He didn’t realize he’d just entered lion territory, and the lions were hunting…”
It’s Just the Way It Was by Joe Broadmeadow and Brendan Doherty
Thus begins the opening lines of a soon to be released book, It’s Just the Way It Was: Inside the War on the New England Mob and other stories, by Joe Broadmeadow and Brendan Doherty.
In It’s Just the Way It Was: Inside the War on the New England Mob and other stories, Joe Broadmeadow and Brendan Doherty take you inside the investigations, covert surveillances, and murky world of informants in the war against Organized Crime.
no mistake about it, it was a war targeting the insidious nature of the mob and
their detrimental effect on Rhode Island and throughout New England.
the book reveals the extensive nature of Organized Crime throughout the United
the opening moments detailing a mob enforcer’s near death in a hail of gunfire to
the potentially deadly confrontation between then Detective Brendan Doherty and
a notorious mob associate, Gerard Ouimette, this book puts you right there in
books on the mob tell a sanitized story from the point of view of guys who
relished their time as mobsters. As Nicholas Pileggi, author of “Wiseguys,”
put it, “most mob books are the
egomaniacal ravings of an illiterate hood masquerading as a benevolent godfather.”
This is not that kind of
book. This is just the way it was.
The series, Crimetown (https://gimletmedia.com/crimetown/), is a well-made production telling the story of organized crime and its effect on Rhode Island. While much of the story centers on Providence, the series illustrates the state and national implications of organized crime.
The producers, Marc Smerling and Zac Stuart-Pontier, did a masterful job of telling the story.
My issue with the series is with what followed.
Post-production images on social media of former investigators sipping cocktails with aging mobsters give the impression these were former opponents in the Super Bowl. Not opposing forces engaged in a fight against criminality.
These investigations of organized crime carried much higher implications to society. Law enforcement had its successes, but largely fought a battle it could not win.
The show, to some extent, perpetuated the many myths of the mob.
That “old school” mobsters didn’t deal drugs. That the streets of Federal Hill were safer when the mob ruled the neighborhoods.
All myths and fallacies whitewashing the truth.
If the mob could make money off cancer, it would.
If the mob didn’t deal drugs, they extracted a street tax from those who did. But the truth is it did more.
All one must do is read the story of The French Connection to see the mob’s early involvement in heroin. The latest revelations out of the Whitey Bulger case adds to the growing evidence of mob involvement in drugs.
The negative effect on society continues to this day, despite the ravages of time on ‘La Cosa Nostra.’ In Rhode Island, the legend of Patriarca lives on. The “I know a guy” wink and nod of doing business.
The once multi-tentacle reach of the mob into state government, the judiciary, and law enforcement may have faded, but the damage to confidence in government remains.
A former Major on the Rhode Island State Police, Lionel Benjamin, once compared the respect people had for (RISP) Colonel Walter Stone to the respect shown Raymond L.S. Patriarca by his men.
Really? That’s a standard we embrace in Rhode Island? This underscores my point.
To this day, if one mentions the name, Raymond, almost everyone in Rhode Island would know who that was. Not the same for Walter, which should make one wonder about such things.
Time has changed the mob. The ravages of age, nepotism, and cultural blending took their toll. They are a more nostalgic memory of “better” days than a powerful force. The state figured out a way to control gambling with the lottery and death, rather than indictments, silenced the once powerful men who ruled the Patriarca family.
Which brings me back to the point.
All those resources we sent after the mob, all those bookie wiretaps draining the lifeblood of organized crime, all those RICO indictments in Rhode Island and what do we have to show for it?
Images of once feared, amoral, and brutal men sipping cocktails with retired cops once tasked with arresting them. Talking about the old days like it was a football game.
It gives me pause.
Crimetown did a service by telling the story of what happened. Let’s make sure we don’t forget the ugly truth by continuing to embrace the myth of the mob. I’m willing to bet Raymond wouldn’t have had a Facebook page. He’d know better than to give people a peek into his reality.
It takes years to realize, you are not unique. It is disappointing, then depressing, then comforting. Most people are raised by their parents as if they were the most unique human ever. It is just a protective mechanism that gradually decreases as you become capable of handling the disappointment.
The good part being that you realize pretty much everyone has done stupid shit just like you did. Those that never did generally become School committee members and worry about things like trying to stop bullying behavior with rallies and t-shirts.
I think self-defense classes are a better idea. Bullies are just crying for help, they need to have their asses kicked. I say we help them by training everyone to do that. We can have t-shirts made “Beat a Bully to make them Better”.
Shakespeare wrote “there’s nothing new under the sun” and there’s nothing (about) you that is different under the sun.
It is not being different that makes someone special, it is being human, just like the other 3+ billion of us on the planet, and doing something different with our fleeting moment, in this particular configuration, in this universe.
Prior to, at my best estimate, October 1955, all of the atoms that coalesced into the fertilized embryo that became me, were part of something else. (for purposes of explanation I was born on July 25th, 1956, doing the math of a normal human embryonic fertilization and development, the sperm and egg that became me met sometime in October, 1955). I try not to think of the reality of that matter, jeez it was my mother and father, eewwhhhuugh.
I was, perhaps, the benefit of the romanticism of a full October moon. Or more likely, knowing the limited time off my father had at home as a Rhode Island State Trooper, a moment of opportunity.
Perhaps the atoms in a grill cheese sandwich that my mother enjoyed, or a glass of milk that my father drank because he didn’t like coffee, became me.
At any rate, it was something else, then it was me. Not different, just arranged differently.
We really are all stardust.
The cells of the hair you spend so much time arranging in perfect symmetry are composed of atoms that were once, perhaps, an element of a Roman sword, or Aristotle’s toenail, or part of a grain of sand on the beach of Normandy. Or, for those that would enjoy this, formerly an atom of a Victoria Secrets model.
Perhaps, it is in the efficiency of the recycling processes of nature that we should recognize God.