THE KRAY BROTHERS
Pages: 2 (384 words) /
Published: Nov 12th, 2014
Twin brothers Ronald "Ronnie" Kray (24 October 1933 – 17 March 1995) and Reginald "Reggie" Kray (24 October 1933 – 1 October 2000) were English gangsters who were the foremost perpetrators of organised crime in the East End of London during the 1950s and 60s.
Ronald, commonly called Ron or Ronnie, most likely suffered from paranoid schizophrenia. With their gang, "The Firm", the Krays were involved in armed robberies, arson, protection rackets, assaults, and the murders of Jack "The Hat" McVitie and George Cornell.
As West End nightclub owners, they mixed with prominent entertainers including Diana Dors, Frank Sinatra and Judy Garland, and with politicians. The Krays were much feared within their milieu, and in the 1960s became celebrities in their own right, even being photographed by David Bailey and interviewed on television.
They were arrested on 9 May 1968 and convicted in 1969 by the efforts of a squad of detectives led by Detective Superintendent Leonard "Nipper" Read, and were both sentenced to life imprisonment.
Ronnie remained in Broadmoor Hospital until his death on 17 March 1995, but Reggie was released from prison on compassionate grounds in August 2000, eight weeks before his death from cancer.
Ronnie and Reggie Kray were born on 24 October 1933 in Hoxton, East London, to Violet (née Lee) (5 August 1909 – 7 August 1982) and Charles "Charlie" David Kray, Sr., (10 March 1907 – 8 March 1983), a scrap gold dealer. They were identical twins, with Reggie being born about ten minutes before Ronnie. Their parents already had a seven-year old son, Charles Jr, (9 July 1926 – 4 April 2000). A sister, Violet, born 1929, died in infancy. When the twins were three years old, they contracted diphtheria but survived. Ron Kray almost died in 1942 from a head injury suffered in a fight with his twin brother.
The twins first attended Wood Close School in Brick Lane and then went to Daniel Street School.
In 1938, the Kray