Layne Staley, 34, never glamorized his admitted drug use. The Alice in Chains and Mad Season singer/songwriter's lyrics and interviews spoke plainly of heroin's momentary joy and lingering sadness. He lived in a private hell; it ultimately didn't matter that this hell was initially of his own making. Staley most likely died from an overdose. The discovery of his body at his U-District home on April 19 was unsurprising but still saddening.

James "Al" Hendrix, 82, was the son of vaudeville performers. He settled in Seattle in 1940, and in the '50s he guided the early musical stirrings of his son Jimi. Following the rock-guitar legend's death in 1970, the elder Hendrix worked to keep Jimi's legacy alive--and to assert the family's role in that legacy.

In 1993, he sued an attorney who had taken control of the Jimi Hendrix estate. With the help of attorneys hired by Paul Allen, Al won back control of Jimi's four completed albums, along with hundreds of hours of posthumously released and previously unreleased tracks. Al later had a falling out with Allen over the latter's plans for a Hendrix museum that would control certain rights to Jimi's name and likeness. Instead, the elder Hendrix established his own organization, Experience Hendrix. Allen's museum was built as the Experience Music Project. Al Hendrix died April 17 from congestive heart failure.

Victor A. Beard, 28, came to Seattle from Duvall in 1996. Known to friends as "Tenashachor the Warlord," he was one of the moderators of Seagoth, a computer bulletin-board system for the local goth community, and a member of the Seattle Gothic Society.

Beard died April 12 from complications of diabetes (he'd already lost a leg to the disease, two years before). One week prior to his death, he'd organized a rent party at Capitol Hill's Aurafice coffeehouse on behalf of a single mom in the goth scene; this was but one of the many things he'd done for his friends and loved ones. An anonymous notice posted at Seagoth said Beard "accepted people for what they were. He never considered such things as how they looked or dressed or spoke, or whether they were accepted by others. It was his acceptance of others, his tolerance and his love of people, that made him so special to so many.... He had to leave several jobs because of his health, but he refused to be limited by these things. He was a free spirit who was determined to live his life on his terms." An online memorial to Beard has been set up at Seagoth, http://pub53.ezboard.com/ bseagothforum.

Update: Pinc, the gay fetish-wear and accessories store on Broadway that announced it was closing in January, now isn't. Instead, it will move to a slightly lower-rent location at 909 East Denny Way.

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