Prince: A Celebration Of His Purpleness

(Photo credit: AP/I. Williams)

Prince Rogers Nelson, aka Prince, aka the “Purple One,” aka “His Purpleness,” aka “the Symbol,” aka “One purple bad mutha–shut your mouth,” will forever be remembered and adored for his music, his style and unapologetic way of bringing people together.

When Prince died on April 21, 2016, the world went purple.
The Eiffel Tower turned purple.
The Niagra Falls went purple.
The tallest building in Dubai went purple.
The White House went purple.

His purpleness still reigns even when he’s no longer here one year later.

Paisley Park created a four-day event including performances from Thursday April 20-23, 2017 to mark the one-year anniversary.

At least five recent books have been published examining Prince’s life and legacy, including a memoir by his first ex-wife, Mayte Garcia. Prince tributes continue to be created, the most recent at the Grammys, where Bruno Mars did the honors and received glowing reviews for him paying homage to His Royal Badness.

But even after a whole year later, there are many questions left unanswered:

What killed him? He died April 21, 2016, in an elevator in Paisley Park in Carver County, Minn. The one-page autopsy report released later said he died of an accidental overdose of the opioid fentanyl.

Famously clean-living Prince died of a painkiller OD at age 57? Unthinkable. Numerous friends, associates, relatives and former wives and girlfriends insisted they never saw him take drugs and it just doesn’t add up.

Was there some medical condition that contributed to his death? We may never know because, under Minnesota law, the full autopsy report can be kept secret for up to 30 years unless the next of kin agree to release it. So far, that has not happened.

Why was he taking fentanyl and for how long? Where did he get it? Was it prescribed by a doctor or acquired by illicit means? Did he know some of the pills containing fentanyl were falsely labeled something else? What was the relationship between his death and the episode of six days earlier when he suffered a medical emergency on a plane? (It landed, he was rushed to a hospital and received overdose-style treatment.)

“There is some indication that his addiction went fairly far back, to the mid-1980s and into the late 1990s, but the evidence is ambiguous,” Hahn says. “It’s an incredibly murky picture. He was a very controlled and focused figure, he kept his cards close to the vest so that’s why we don’t know.”

What do investigators say? The Carver County Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Minnesota, and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration have been investigating Prince’s death since it occurred but so far none have anything to report.

“The case remains open and is being actively investigated by our detectives and the DEA under the guidance of…