Friends, family and band mates will gather for the first time Thursday since four of their friends were shot and killed by a mentally man at a Seattle hangout.
It’s been six months since the shootings at Café Racer rattled the eclectic music scene that Joe Albanese, Drew Keriakedes, Don Largen and aspiring actress Kim Layfield were a part of. Gloria Leonides was also killed that day by Ian Stawicki near downtown Seattle.
“You are left with an emptiness now,” said Jimmy Berg, a friend and fellow musician with Keriakedes and Albanese. “Now that the hoopla has died down and the intense grieving is over, it’s time to get on with our lives.”
A benefit concert is happening Thursday night to help launch a new program to help the healing. Brown Paper Tickets is issuing special tickets to local and national events that include illustrations by Café Racer artists. If customers choose to buy those, an additional 25 cents will go toward to the Victims of the Café Racer Memorial Fund.
“The impact it had was pretty much an explosion,” said Nancy Neyhart, a manager who returned to the Café Racer after the shooting to help. “I needed to be here for my friends. There are waves that happened, and you never know when they are coming or how they are going to hit you.”
The launch party will feature musicians and performance artists that had a direct connection to those that were lost as a result of this tragedy.