It all started when...
In 1946 a man named Willie Forkner crashed his motorcycle through a gate during a race event and joined in the fun. He was kicked out of the 13 Rebels MC because of his loose cannon antics. That started the historic rise of the Boozefighters Motorcycle Club.
Willie went about finding others who shared his outlook on life, and opinion of a good time. He didn't have to look long or far; Fatboy Nelson, Dink Burns, George Menker, and more, were ready for a change, and a break from the formalities of clubs at the time.
The Boozefighters Motorcycle club was 1st discussed in Jack Lilly's Smoke filled Studebaker car during early spring of 1946. When the wine ran out they moved the discussion, about starting the new club, inside the BIG 'A' “All American Bar”
The Boozefighters Motorcycle Club was soon officially formed at the All American Bar in Los Angeles. A place whose name befitted the many WW 2 veterans who founded our club - they had “been there and done that”, and the quiet life just wasn't in them any longer. They were just a bunch of American men that needed a little more excitement than the average Joe.
One of the most visible clubs at infamous Hollister MC racing event in 1947 was the Boozefighters, a group led by the charismatic "Wino Willie" Forkner. At the time, the Boozefighters had grown to chapters in three cities: Los Angeles, San Pedro, and San Francisco. The Boozefighters Motorcycle Club-almost exclusively made up of WWII vets.
In 1951, Harper's magazine published a story called "Cyclist's Raid" by a writer named Frank Rooney. Rooney was inspired by the Hollister incident and a Life magazine spread. And, yes, in his story a motorcycle "gang" takes over a town. The real serious stuff hit the fan shortly thereafter when Stanley Kramer-then a young, ambitious film producer/director-also felt the inspiration of Hollister; and Rooney's short story. His classic motion picture, "The Wild One" debuted in New York on the last day of 1953. The roles of "Johnny" and "Chino"-played by Marlon Brando and Lee Marvin respectively-helped to launch the careers of both of these cinematic giants but more important, was the social impact of the film. The leather, the attitudes, the motorcycles; and the ever-present strength, power, and volatility of the bikers became a paradoxical fear/envy attraction for nearly everyone. Not everyone could become a "wild one"; but it seemed that deep down everyone wanted to be.
The famous Boozefighters green and white patch-the bottle with three stars-is a legend in itself. There has been a great deal of speculation as to the origin but shortly before her death, Wino's widow, Teri & Jeannean Roccio’s explained that the design was based on the vintage Hennessy's cognac bottle label: "Willie liked the looks of those three stars so much that he put them across the barrel of the bottle." The use of the bottle in the patch speaks for itself; he wasn't called Wino for nothing! The Boozefighters also been tagged with phrases such as “A Drinking Club with a Motorcycle Problem!”
The Boozefighters MC is among the oldest motorcycle clubs in existence, and has enjoyed a good law abiding reputation since spring of 1946. We have a very long and colorful history. We became international in the early 2000’s and still growing.