Strongest Hells Angels Member: Lee Moran

Lee Moran was the strongest hells angels member that ever lived. In the year 1984 he tried to break the world record in squat. This exercise is performed with a barbell on your neck. You have to squat deeply and to get up again.

And Lee Moran was able to lift 1000 pounds on his neck. This exercise is not only a strong challenge for the body but also for the mind. Lee had a strong will power and has gone beyond boundaries. 

Lee Moran 1003 lb squat powerlifting legend

On the photo you can see Lee Moran trying to break the record in the squat. He even accidentally bit a part of his tongue off. He liked to live hard and fast, he was truly a masochist.

At Moran’s gym the people used to fear him. When he walked into a weight room, all the people stopped working out within minutes and later they were out of the door. They saw the huge muscles, tattoos on the inside of his forearms and the passion in his black eyes. The people saw and felt Moran’s power.
But you will see Lee was one of nicest men you could ever met.

Bill Kazmaier vs. Lee Moran
Recently found a old newspaper excerption about Bill Kazmaier and Lee Moran. 

“And apparently even the current world champion of powerlifting, officially the world’s strongest man, is afraid of Moran. Bill Kazmaier, the American who won the 1983 superheavyweight title of the powerlifting world championships – a man who holds the sanctioned world records in the bench press 661 pounds, dead lift 887 and overall total 2424 pounds – has declined to compete against Moran, one-on-one. Kazmaier couldn’t come to the contest because he couldn’t beat Lee,” says contest director Ron Mortis.

Lee Moran’s Competition: Dayton Convention Center 1984
Lee moran lifted with powerlifting legends John Gamble and Dave Waddington. The hall was filled up with 4000 people. This huge crowd wanted to see records and blood. They wanted to see Lee Moran’s fight against the steel.

Lee opened with 953lb in the squat. He squatted down and the technique was perfect, but something went wrong anyway. Lee started to swing, lost his balance and the barbell fell forward. There was a big bang and the people out of the door would believe it was nothing more than tectonic activity causing the disturbance!

Lee Moran 1003lb Squat blood powerlifting

The attempt has put a lot of strain on Lee Moran’s circulatory system. He almost lost consciousness and had to be kept awake with smelling salt/ammonia. During the attempt he bit his tongue very hard. He neraly cutted his tongue off! In the picture you can see Lee’s mouth filled with blood. But you can see in his eyes he will never quit. Lee Moran came from the darkest edges of our society and of course he will not give up! The mighty Moran stepped back onstage to give it another try. The bar wa loaded up with 953lb and Lee made it!

1003lb record attempt
Lee Moran was mentally prepared went under the barbell and grabbed the weight on his neck. Then it happened. The discs slipped away from the barbell.
First the one side and then the discs fell off the other side.

Lee Moran squat fail powerlifting

Due to the uneven ratio of the weights the barbellflew away from Lee’s neck. Thus the barbell became a deadly projectile. Was Lee Moran dead? No, but witnesses will tell you that it’s a miracle he survived intact, to say nothing of the folk standing in the immediate radius!

Of course, this was not Lee’s fault. One of the collars had popped loose from the strain of over 1000 pounds. the officials gave Lee the opportunity to try the lift again. By this time the crowd, nearly 4000 strong, was screaming, sweating, and fairly out of their minds while encouraging Lee Moran to write his name in the record book for some time to come.

Maybe they wanted to see blood. It’s a fair bet, knowing their disposition. More probably, they wanted to see history being made. They wanted to experience the moment of Lee’s vicariously. feeling the crippling weight mashing their vertebral discs together so hard that a lesser man’s would turn to bone meal.

Lee Moran 1003lb squat

Once again, Lee bent the inch-thick bar across his shoulders and set up for the referee’s signal. He got the clap. The noise was deafening in the huge Municipal Convention Center as the crowd roared for Lee. Down he went, resting his prodigious trunk against his beer-keg thighs. Then he exploded, bar vibrating, muscles straining, blood gushing from his nostrils in a torrent. The Mighty Moran pushed himself into immortality. The thousand pound barrier was officially shattered forever.

Lee Moran was one of the greatest and nicest men you would have ever met. When Moran was not working out at the Iron Island health club or breaking records  or attendning electronics technology classes, he spent his free time in the weightroom helping others.

Lee Moran quote gym rat powerlifting

Lee Moran: “I help the other guys because they are the ones who help me. I work out with guys who are not in my league, but they put the intensity into it. It keeps me going. I don’t know, it may keep them going, working with me. Maybe pushes them. Then they push m. Everybody catches it – the electricity”

Lee used to cite that he is a regular gym rat. That is where his whole world come from. He wanted to be somebody. Everybody wants to be somebody at something. He wanted to be the first to total over 2500, the first to squat over 1000lb. They remember you for that. He was just lucky enough that he was good at powerlifting!

Lee Moran grave stone powerlifting

Newspaper: Santa Cruz Sentinel


3 thoughts on “Strongest Hells Angels Member: Lee Moran”

  1. I worked out at Iron Island around 1984 and met Lee after he had retired from competative lifting. He was still awesome, and on days when he felt like doing some heavy lifting I put down my weights and just watched.

    You could not find a nicer guy and he was always up walking across the street for a couple of beers. I was not even a real lifter at the time but that was type of guy he was – always happy to encourage others.

    Some great memeories include seeing him roll up to the gym the night he got his bike – a HD Sportster. He had just joined the local club and (jokingly) invited me to drop by the clubhouse – but we later decided against that.

    He knew his time was limited and lived it large! RIP Lee – the world misses you.

  2. I met Lee at Iron Island Gym. In Alameda Ca. Back in the mid 80’s.Through a mutual friend. Seeing him workout. was undescribable.. He had 5 plates on each side. On the benchpress.. Doing repetitions! WOW….


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