Eccles was jammed with hundreds of bikers from all over the North West today as they came out in force to say a final goodbye to Pete Johnson, better known as ‘Yammy’.
Yammy died of pancreatic cancer on 11 March at his home in Peel Green, aged 59.
The bikers met at the Unicorn pub on Liverpool Road, Peel Green at 11am on Monday 23 March, then rode through Eccles in a show of solidarity with their departed friend.
Onlookers stopped in disbelief at the sight of so many motorbikes whizzing by – there were Yamahas, Triumphs, Suzukis, and dozens of huge Harley Davisons, many of them customised with chrome and airbrushed petrol tanks.
They parked up at Holy Cross Church at 1pm and awaited the funeral.
The church itself was packed with friends of Yammy and hundreds stayed outside awaiting to take the hearse to Peel Green Cemetery.
The guard of honour to the cemetery was led by his old friend of many years, known as ‘Gerv’, while other bikers stopped the traffic as the convoy of motorcycles followed behind the hearse.
In the car park we spoke to an old friend of Yammy’s, Brian ‘Sinbad’ Harrison.
He told us: “Yammy was regular on the local biker scene attending rallies with the Mid Life Crisis biker club and attending their annual Christmas runs to children’s hospitals and other charity biker events.
“I have known him since 1971. He was a great guy who would do anything for everyone. Nobody had a bad word to say about him.
“He was only diagnosed with his illness just before Christmas and this is so tragic because he was just starting to live his life again with his grandchildren
“He lived life to the full, was good to his family, liked a pint as we all do and will be sadly missed by many, many people.”
After the funeral his family and friends met up at the Unicorn pub to celebrate his life in a way which he would have enjoyed.
Pete leaves behind wife Marilyn, daughters Samantha and Kayleigh, his mother Margaret and his grandchildren.
In an obituary the family said: “Pete will be dearly missed by his family and many friends. But no one can say he didn’t live life to the full.”
They added that any flowers or donations should go to Christie’s hospital.