Frankie Burke (Francis Aiello)
Photos with Frankie Burke
BiographyBrooklyn, New York, USA
Francis Vaselle Aiello was born June 6, 1915, in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, New York. He worked many odd jobs after graduating High School, including working with his father, Carmine, who owned a tailoring shop. He earned the nickname "The earl of Warwick" because of his persistence trying to obtain a job at the most luxurious hotel in town, The Warwick Hotel (he sat in the lobby for weeks every day). However, he was a "newspaper seller" when he first saw 'James Cagney' on film and became an immediate fan. Read more... family, much to their approval, before deciding to hitchhike to Hollywood to get an interview with Cagney, but this attempt failed, so he returned home to New York. Later he tried it again, and this time he landed a job on the vaudeville circuit doing impressions of Cagney. A Warner Bros. talent scout saw his act and hired him for the role of the young version of Cagney's "Rocky Sullivan" in Angels with Dirty Faces (1938). After that he made 17 films until he disappeared from the celebrity circuit in 1941. His whereabouts from 1941 to about 1961 are unknown, but sometime in the early 1960s, he decided to ride the rails as what he, himself, called a "Hobo" until he became too ill and was taken from a train when it pulled into Junction City, Kansas. He was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer and sent to a long term care facility in Chapman, Kansas where he passed away only weeks later on April 7th, 1983.