SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS RADIO) – Mourners filled the street in front of the Castro Theater Tuesday night to pay their respects to local drag-legend Heklina, who passed away in early April.
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The city closed down the entire street to allow room for the public memorial, as drag queens performed and gatherers celebrated Heklina’s life. The Drag Queen Extraordinaire passed away suddenly on April 3 in London, devastating San Francisco's drag and queer community.
"It's very fitting for the queen that Heklina was," said Philly.
Philly and Heklina were friends for 20 years. "Even before that, I knew who she was for like 10 years prior to that because you couldn't be in San Francisco nightlife and not know that name, so the name preceded the relationship," he said.
Many people took time to share their memories of the beloved icon with KCBS Radio.
Rose, a drag performer, recounted a time she attended a movie at Alamo Drafthouse when she realized Heklina was also in the crowd.
"I hear this voice ring out being like 'shut up! Why are you talking? It's a movie! Why are you talking?' And afterwards she walked past me and I said 'oh my god you're Heklina' and she said 'oh my god I can't believe you recognized me' and in my head I was like, that voice, can't miss it," Rose said.
"Every moment I got to see her was a joy and this Christmas is going to be the worst not having Golden Girls the way it used to be," she added.
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