Goodfellas Mobster Henry Hill Dead at 69

Long illness whacks famous informant
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 13, 2012 12:57 AM CDT
Updated Jun 13, 2012 1:27 AM CDT
Goodfellas Mobster Henry Hill Dead at 69
Henry Hill's 2009 mugshot.   (AP Photo/Fairview Heights Police)

Henry Hill has died at the age of 69—young for an American male, but a Methuselah for a mob turncoat. The former gangster, whose life story was made into the 1990 movie Goodfellas, died in Los Angeles after a long fight with an undisclosed illness, TMZ reports. Testimony from Hill, who took part in the famous 1978 Lufthansa heist, led to the conviction of dozens of his former associates, but he was booted from the witness protection program for persistent misbehavior.

In later years, Hill was a frequent guest on Howard Stern's radio show, opened a restaurant called Wiseguys, and even sold his own line of marinara sauce, the New York Daily News notes. He served six months for methamphetamine possession in 2005, and was arrested after getting drunk following a showing of his artwork in 2009. Even after most of his old associates died, Hill said he felt like a marked man. "There’s always that chance that some young buck wants to make a name for themselves,” he said in 2010. “I never thought I’d reach this wonderful age. I’m just grateful for being alive.” (Read more obituary stories.)

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