I was born in Newburgh, New York located sixty miles north of New York City on the Hudson River. Newburgh was an all American city back in the 1950’s and a great place to live. My father was a policeman in Newburgh and also ran my grandmothers bar on the waterfront-Stang’s bar and Grill.
Mickey Spillane moved to Newburgh to write and to support himself worked in a department store next to Stang’s. Mickey would come into Stang’s after work and Mickey and my father became fast friends. Mickey used my father as the inspiration and model for his new character- “Mike Hammer”-who would become the most famous fictional private detective of all time. Mickey became the world’s most published author of that era. Hollywood pursued Mickey and the “Mike Hammer” novels were to become movies and later two times a TV series. Every actor wanted to test for the role of Mike Hammer, but Mickey wanted Jack Stang cast as the “gumshoe.”
My book is a fascinating story of the Real Mike Hammer- Jack Stang –and chronicles his life from a boy of nine years old- through WWII- and to Hollywood. My father and I were very close and when he passed away it was a great shock to me and as I quickly found out to a lot of people all over the country. As soon as word got out of his passing, I was contacted by the United Press, TV, radio, letters and calls came from across the country. Mickey was very upset as they were friends for 40 years. Mickey stayed in touch with me, my sister and mother via phone calls and letters. Mickey told me he was doing something very special for my father in the new book he was writing. Unfortunately, Mickey passed away before finishing the book; however his best friend and author Max Collins finished the novel.
I received a call from my sister one Sunday morning in 2007. She informed me there was a book review in the New York Times about a new Mickey Spillane novel-“Dead Street”. I read the review and Mickey used my father’s real name as the detective-Captain Jack Stang.
I always wanted to write a book about my father, but never followed through. Now is the time to re- unite Jack and Mickey and tell the story.