Dion O'Banionmoran.jpg

(8 July 1892-10 November 1924)

Birth Place and Childhood

Dion O'Banion was born in Aurora, Illinois to Irish Catholic parents. He spent his early childhood in a small town named Maroa in Central Illinois. After his mother passed away in 1901, O'Banion moved to Chicago with his father and one of his brothers. Dion O'Banion and his family decided to settle down in Kilgubbin. Kilgubbin was a heavily Irish area on the North Side of Chicago that was known for its high level of crime rates.
Young O'Banion joined the church choir for Chicago's Holy Name Cathedral. This did not hold Dion's interests. Dion O'Banion fell in to the street life of Kilgubbin. Dion and his friends joined the Market Street Gang, which specialized in theft and robbery in the black market. The boys became "sluggers" later on. "Sluggers" were hired by a newspaper to beat newsstand owners when they did not sell the paper. The Market Street Gang then joined up with the Chicago Tribune. They then switched to the rival newspaper called the Chicago Examiner. Through his work with many criminal groups, O'Banion met a safecracker by the name of Charles Reiser. Dion then got arrested for safecracking then for assault. O'Banion would never spend time in prison again.


Dion O'Banion had little or no education. The only education he had was religion in church.


Dion O'Banion had many negative influences through his life. One influence were the criminals controlling the street in Kilgubbin. His friends were also bad influences. In his teenage years, O'Banion and his friends joined the Market Street Gang. He followed his friends into the criminal life. Then he joined in the gang wars for the turf in Chicago. All of these were terrible influences in O'Banion's life and kept him in the criminal life. Dion O'Banion was attracted to the gangster life anyways so the influences just kept him going.


Dion was always a criminal. He barely had true real jobs. He bootlegged alcohol during the Prohibition of 1920. O'Banion would get alcohol from Canada and sell it in Chicago. He would also hijack shipments of alcohol to sell. Then O'Banion started money laundering by open up a flower store. It was a good cover-up for his alcohol and gang business. The flower store was his own true job. He actually was good at it. Dion O'Banion was a very successful gangster and businessman for say.


O'Banion's death was one of a true gangster. He screwed over another high ranking gang official. The gang official's name was Johnny Torrio. O'Banion and Torrio both had money put into a brewery. Dion knew there was going to be a police raid of the brewery, but he did not warn Torrio. The raid happened and both of the men were inside. O'Banion had no past records of bootlegging so he got off without real punishment. Torrio did have past records though. He got sent to prison.
Three men entered Dion's flower store. He was clipping flowers. Yale,one of the men, grasped Dion's hand in a death grasp. The two other men shot O'Banion six times. Two bullets hit his chest, two hit the neck, and two hit his face around his cheeks. Dion died instantly. This hit on O'Banion sparked a brutal five year gang war between the Chicago Outfit and the North Side Gang.