Memorial at historic bar for man killed in South San Francisco hit-and-run crash
COLMA, Calif. - At the historic neighborhood landmark Molloy's Bar in Colma, a crowd got a round of beers Friday night, raising their glasses and cans of beer to toast their missing their friend and frequent customer Will King, 45, who was killed in a hit-and-run crash about a half-mile from the bar.
"Everybody loved Will," said Owen Molloy, the owner of Molloy's Bar, "Will was part of our big Molloy's family."
Molloy says Will had a big presence.
"Will was a gentle giant. He was 6'11" and just a really nice guy. Always had a smile on his face, never had anything bad to say about anybody," said Molloy.
Molloy and others said when they first heard the news about the fatal hit-and-run crash April 5th on the 1500 block of El Camino Real in South San Francisco, they didn't know the man killed was their friend.
On Tuesday, police arrested a suspect, Joaquin Duarte, 52, a BART systems fore worker.
At the memorial gathering Friday night, Will's friends had a chance to grieve.
"We just wanted something for our customers to gather and tell all the stories about Will and relive the memories," said Molloy.
Former co-workers at the Amazon Fresh warehouse in Brisbane met with coworkers from his most recent job that he started just four months ago, working nights loading beer for Reyes Golden Brands.
His manager John Skapik, Reyes Golden Brands Night Supervisor, said Will always had a positive attitude.
"He uplifted the crew. Even on our hardest nights when we were short-staffed, people called in sick, whatever. He was constantly uplifting the guys, you know, we're going to get through this," said Skapik.
Many people remembered his humor.
SEE ALSO: On-duty BART employee arrested in fatal South San Francisco hit-and-run
"He loved to take pictures with shorter people...his big stature and then standing next to someone shorter," said Molloy smiling.
"If you ever needed anything from the top shelves, he was the person to ask," said Christopher Nelson, a former co-worker from Amazon Fresh who added that Will also had a big heart.
"He loved his cats. That was the thing he always talked about every time I saw him," said Nelson.
In his memory, Molloy put out signs and coasters and the bartender pulled out Will's favorite beer.
"He would love his Pabst. He would order two at a time," said Molloy smiling.
Behind the bar, a photo of Will was surrounded by flowers and cans of Pabst beer.
"When you don't get to say goodbye, it's a harder thing," said Nelson, "So I just wanted to be here around people who knew him, and that I know and just kind of lift a glass."
By evening, people gathered around the bar. A pyramid of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer cans had a photo at the top of Will King and people did raise their drinks to toast their friend, who made such a lasting impression on so many.
"Cheers to the gentle giant, Will," they said.
BART officials issued a statement earlier in the week expressing condolences to the family and saying they are cooperating with the police investigation.
An attorney for the suspect says they had no comment as they are still reviewing the evidence.