On April 19, 1997, near his home in Riverside, California, then Mentors vocalist/drummer Eldon Wayne Hoke a/k/a El Duce reportedly fell asleep drunk on railroad tracks and was killed by an oncoming train. Or did he? To this day, there were no witnesses to the accident and details on his death were always considered “murky.” Speculation arose as to the true circumstances around his death – as just a week earlier Hoke revealed that he was offered $50,000 by Courtney Love to take out husband Kurt Cobain (Nirvana) in an interview with writer Nick Broomfield.
However, just today, Hoke came out of hiding to reveal that his death was a hoax in order to “get [himself] away from the world of music and live a normal life.” The revelation comes just a day after Hoke was sighted doing tree cutting work in a bucket lift in a residential area outside of Los Angeles. Witnesses who pointed him out noticed the business slogan on the side of the truck – “You Axe For It…We Chop It!”
James Glausen of Highland Park commented: “I was a huge fan of The Mentors and a member of the Four F Club back in the day. I saw the truck and did a triple take. I looked up and there was El Duce sawing a huge tree limb!”
El Duce confessed later: “I really needed to get away from the world of music and live a normal life. So I killed off El Duce and became Eldon Wayne Hoke, the friendly neighborhood chainsaw wielding guy!”
When asked about whether The Mentors would reform with the original lineup, El Duce added: “I’ve never lost touch with Sickie [Wifebeater] and [Dr. Heathen] Scum. Hell…I go to all their kids’ soccer games! Now that the proverbial ‘sandwich of love’ is out of the bag, you never know!”
El Duce was with The Mentors from 1977 to his supposed death in 1997, having appeared on “You Axed for It!” (1985), “Up the Dose” (1986), “Sex, Drugs & Rock ‘n’ Roll” (1988), “Rock Bible” (1990) and “To The Max” (1991). He was first replaced by El Rapo (Jake Huber) and most recently Mad Dog (Marc DeLeon).