Henry Hill, mobster subject of 'GoodFellas,' dies at 69
Henry Hill, the infamous mob informant whose life of crime was chronicled in the film classic “GoodFellas,” was the first to admit that he did “a lot of bad things back then.”
“I shot at people. I busted a lot of heads, and I buried a lot of bodies,” he told the London Telegraph in 2010. “You can try to justify it by saying they deserved it, that they had it coming, but some just got whacked for absolutely no reason at all.”
Hill, 69, who spent more than a decade in the federal witness protection program and later made various attempts to cash in on his notoriety as an ex-gangster, died Tuesday at a Los Angeles hospital after a long illness, his girlfriend told the Associated Press.
Hill’s story of how he worked for the Lucchese mafia family in New York was told by author Nicholas Pileggi in the book “Wiseguy.” That became the basis for director Martin Scorsese’s 1990 film “GoodFellas.”
In 2004, long after he had left the witness protection program, Hill told The Times, “I have no idea why people are so interested in gangsters. Come on, people are bored.” Nonetheless, he wrote his own account of his life published that year called “Gangsters and Goodfellas: The Mob, Witness Protection, and Life on the Run.”
A full obituary will follow at latimes.com/obits.
--Dennis McLellan and Claire Noland
Photo: Henry Hill in 2004. Credit: Los Angeles Times