Hells Angels figurehead Sonny Barger passed away: ‘If you’re reading this, you’ll know I’m gone’ | Abroad

In the sad Facebook post, Barger writes that he has “had a life full of adventure”. ,,I have enjoyed my time with my club brothers, my family and good friends. Know that I died peacefully after a short battle with cancer.” He adds that he passed away in front of his wife, Zorana, and loved ones.

Barger’s former lawyer says he died at home after a long illness from the effects of liver cancer. “Everyone around him was emotionally prepared for it.”

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blow up clubhouse

Barger is best known as the founder of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club in Oakland in 1957, one of the first branches of the motorcycle club. He would have played a major role in merging the various branches into one large motorcycle club, which would spread all over the United States.

The leader has had a wild life. Once he took the helm, the troubles quickly set in: he took drugs and raced his Harley-Davidson (dubbed “sweet cocaine”) on the vast highways of California.

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His criminal record also grew longer over the years: driving under the influence, offenses with drugs and weapons, kidnappings and extortion. In 1988 he ended up behind bars. Barger was sentenced to five years in prison for conspiring to kill five members of a rival club and blow up their clubhouse. This also immediately ended his presidency, but he remained the figurehead of the club for decades.

‘Antisocial, murderous motorcyclists’

The Hells Angels are known for their long history of violence and crime, and Barger didn’t deny it. He wrote several books in which he talked about crime within the club. But in his biography he showed a different side of the motorcycle members.

He wrote that the Hells Angels were not a collection of “antisocial, murderous bikers.” Instead, he claimed, the Hells Angels enjoy riding their old bikes and partying.

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He also describes how the Hells Angels have changed over the years. In the fifties they mainly came together to ride a motorcycle and party. In the 1960s they became famous as a motorcycle club that rebelled against the establishment. And over the next decade, the Hells Angels evolved into a gang organization, leading to widespread condemnation.

Barger has also starred in several films, including the motorcycle series ‘Sons of Anarchy’ and the movie ‘Angels from Hell’.

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