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Bill Bonanno, Mafia scion, eulogized in private ceremony

Rosalie Bonanno holds the cross that was on her husband Salvatore "Bill" Bonanno's casket at Holy Hope Cemetery.

Rosalie Bonanno holds the cross that was on her husband Salvatore "Bill" Bonanno's casket at Holy Hope Cemetery.

Bill Bonanno, who parlayed his family and personal history in the Mafia into a legitimate career as an author and movie producer, was honored by family and friends Monday morning at a private funeral.

Bonanno, 75, died Tuesday of a heart attack at his Tucson home.

Unlike the 2002 funeral of the family patriarch, Joseph Bonanno Sr., which was attended by more than 400 people and covered extensively by the press, Bill Bonanno’s funeral drew a more modest crowd and reporters were excluded from services.

Born Salvatore Bonanno on Nov. 5, 1932, in Brooklyn, N.Y., he rose to become an adviser to his father, who had founded one of New York’s infamous five Mafia families, and eventually headed the crime family in his father’s absence.

In 1968, Bill Bonanno was imprisoned on contempt of court, credit-card fraud and other white-collar crime charges after being indicted by a New York City grand jury.

Between his first stint in prison and 1993, he spent 12 years behind bars for several convictions.

Both Bonanno and his wife of 51 years, the former Rosalie Profacci, wrote about their experiences being in a Mafia family in memoirs.

Bill Bonanno’s book, “Bound by Honor,” along with a biography “Honor Thy Father” by Gay Talese, were the basis of a 2000 Showtime cable movie series. Rosalie Bonanno’s book, “Love, Honor and Obey: The Last Mafia Marriage,” became a 1993 TV movie.

Family members escorted Rosalie Bonanno to Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic Church on Monday. None spoke to the press.

Bonanno’s surviving sister, Catherine Genovese, arrived with her sister-in-law.

Grandsons, who two years ago feted Bill and Rosalie Bonanno at their golden wedding anniversary, on Monday carried their grandfather’s gold and bronze casket into the church.

Burial followed at Holy Hope Cemetery.

Some of the grandsons carry the casket of Salvatore

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