September 11, 1995 12:00 PM

Though some readers condemned the late Jerry Garcia (PEOPLE, Aug. 21) for his drug use, far more mourned his passing and praised the messages they found in his life and his music. Correspondents waxed indignant over Anna Nicole Smith‘s décolletage at the funeral of her millionaire husband, and many criticized us for showing it.

JERRY GARCIA

I never did drugs, never smoked pot, never got drunk, but I love the music of the Grateful Dead. Their concerts were more about peace and love than anything else. God bless the Dead! We’ll miss you, Jerry.

RAPHAEL GIGLIO, Nashville

It’s sad to think that I will never again see and experience the magic of the Dead playing live. It’s heartbreaking to know that now some will never get to experience that magic at all.

DENA OLDT, Fremont, Calif.

If I had not spent so much time with my wife raising two wonderful children, working full-time jobs, spending evenings at kids’ activities, paying a mortgage and saving for the future, I too could have become a Deadhead.

ROD GOEMAN, Madison, S.Dak.

I regret the loss of Jerry Garcia as I would any human being; however, I do not regret the loss of the greatest evangelist of the drug culture. A great burden is lifted from the parents of today’s and tomorrow’s adolescents.

SANDRA S. KAHN, Highland Park, Ill.

Jerry Garcia may have lived a short life, but I would bet that if he were offered another 10 or 15 years without the road, the band and the drugs, he’d refuse. R.I.P., Jerry.

HAZEL PLUMMER, Mishawaka, Ind.

ANNA NICOLE SMITH
The picture of the widow’s dress was painful enough, but was it necessary to publish her exposed nipple as well? I don’t read this magazine for the latest techniques in brain surgery, but please, the next time I want to see a woman’s breasts I’ll pick up Playboy.

ERICA DOLGOFF, Annapolis, Md.

I wonder: if this were the latest male hunk with a partially unclad testicle, would you be so eager to print that picture? My guess is you would not.

MINDY JOHNSON, Tampa

I, for one, hope that Anna Nicole Smith gets at least enough money from her husband’s estate so that she can afford to buy a dress that fits. What a disgrace!

C. FONSECA, West Chester, Pa.

She is nothing but a bloodsucking parasite who should still be frying chicken.

LISA M. DAVIS, Crescent Springs, Ky.

I have no doubts about the sincerity of Anna Nicole Smith‘s love for the late J. Howard Marshall II. His $500 million had nothing to do with it. Obviously she would have married him if he’d been a penniless retiree. But to convince the skeptics who seem to feel otherwise, I suggest that Precious Package renounce any claim to his fortune or donate all of it to charities.

B.D. WHEELER, Baltimore

How many women have stated they were going to find an ailing old man with a bundle of money and marry him? Hats off to Anna Nicole Smith for going through with it and finding love in the process.

NANCY G. ZIMMERMAN

White Plains, Md.

GAVAN DAWS

I would like to express my deepest thanks to Gavan Daws for researching and writing Prisoners of the Japanese. Both my parents endured the horrors of the Japanese occupation of the Philippines during World War II. My father was a POW interned in Manila; my mother hid in the jungle with her four siblings and my grandmother for the duration of the war. Both families lost years, dreams, relatives and friends. Both families have endured and have the gift of knowing what is really important in life. I am the next generation who remembers that history should not be forgotten.

NANCY GUITTARD, Saratoga, Calif.

MONICA TURNER

Ye gods! Who would take a child to a pediatrician so lacking in common sense that she would even consider marrying Mike Tyson?

SIDNEY H. BUTCHER, Tulsa

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