Oakland Slain Motorcyclist ID'd as Key Healthcare Union Leader

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A motorcyclist who was killed in a collision with an SUV in North Oakland on Wednesday evening was a licensed clinical social worker who was a key leader of the National Union of Healthcare Workers' Northern California unit, union officials said on Friday.

Clement Papazian, 61, of Oakland, died following a collision with an SUV at the intersection of Claremont Avenue and Clifton Street shortly before 6:50 p.m. on Wednesday.

NUHW President Sal Rosselli said Papazian was president of the union's mental health clinicians bargaining unit and described him as "our number one rank-and-file leader."

Rosselli said, "We're all devastated by his death."

He said Papazian worked as a licensed clinical social worker for Kaiser Permanente Oakland for 30 years and helped found the National Union of Healthcare Workers.

"It will be difficult to replace Clement's knowledge and expertise," Roselli said.

Oakland police said investigators determined that a 2017 Ford Expedition was traveling southbound in the 5400 block of Claremont Avenue and was making a left U-turn at the intersection at Clifton Street when it collided into a 1975 BMW Motorcycle that Papazian was driving northbound Claremont Avenue, police said.

Paramedics responded to the collision but Papazian was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Ford driver, identified as a 26-year-old Berkeley man, stayed at the scene and cooperated with investigators, police said.

It isn't yet known whether alcohol or drugs were a factor in the collision, according to police.

Rosselli said the fatal collision occurred only a few blocks from Papazian's home. He said the union would prepare a video tribute to Papazian in the near future.

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