Hells Angels rumble through Daly City in tribute to fallen leader :: Washington Confederation of Clubs :: Wear your Patch with Pride

DALY CITY — In a continuous wave of gleaming chrome and worn black leather, thousands of Hells Angels rumbled into Duggan’s Serra Mortuary on Monday to honor their fallen brother. Many kept to themselves, while others consoled one another with one-armed hugs and whispered words of support. At least 2,000 Hells Angels and associates paid their respects to 46-year-old Mark “Papa” Guardado, president of the Hells Angels’ San Francisco chapter. “He was a great guy,” said one Hells Angel who didn’t give his name. “We’re going to miss him.” “Digital,” a biker from Bloodline, a motorcycle club in Oakland, agreed. “We’re here to show support,” he said. Guardado was shot on the night of Sept. 2 outside Dirty Thieves, a dive bar at 24th Street and Treat Avenue in San Francisco’s Mission district. He was taken to San Francisco General Hospital, where he died. San Francisco police suspect 37-year-old Christopher Ablett, a member of the Mongols, a rival motorcycle club, was responsible for his death. San Francisco police reportedly issued a $5 million warrant last week for the Modesto resident’s arrest. Police reportedly searched Ablett’s home and seized a motorcycle and other items. Ablett is still on the loose. Officers with the California Highway Patrol and Daly City, San Francisco and Colma police departments maintained a low profile Monday morning. They observed from various vantage points during what Daly City police Cpt. Eric Wollman described as the largest funeral ever held in Daly City. Wollman refused to disclose how many officers were present, and said their job was to assist the group in their procession to Cypress Lawn Cemetery in Colma and the Hells Angels clubhouse in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood. “It’s difficult, it’s unique and it’s fluid,” said Wollman, who also worried about possible retaliation if members of the Mongols Motorcycle Club showed up. “We have to respond to whatever occurs, moment to moment.” Meanwhile, spectators were drawn to the massive procession at Duggan’s. People gathered to watch from each level of a nearby multilevel parking garage, while more stood with members of the media on a dirt lot across from the funeral home, where the smell of exhaust was potent. A Daly City resident who did not want to give his name said he attended Sunday night’s vigil at a local mortuary home. He and his brother used to ride motorcycles, and said he knows some of the guys who attended the funeral. “I’m here to pay a little tribute,” he said. A few feet away, Mary Kay Mitchell smiled. “I’ve never seen so much concentrated testosterone in my life,” said the special events manager at Breathe California, a nonprofit. “This is the real deal. The last American cowboys who ride their horses, but their horses are metal.” Her admiration for the outlaw motorcycle club was undeniable, and she didn’t care that she was late for work. Instead she took in the scene, observing the interactions among the men and marvelling at the members of the She Devils Motorcycle Club as they roared past her. “This is so California,” the 56-year-old Redwood City resident said. “This is so Americana. It’s history in its own weird way.” Jim Flaherty, 66, of Daly City, was happy to watch as well. “This is part of our culture,” Flaherty said. “The motorcycles, the camaraderie — despite all the hassles, this is a brotherhood. I’m sure I’ll never see this in my lifetime, especially in my backyard.”

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