If there's any lesson to be learned from Williams' death, AIDS activist Robertson says, it's that the community must speak more openly about the problem. "Use yourself as a teachable moment. Your openness may spark someone else to be more open about their sexual orientation or their HIV status... We're gonna keep having people dying because no one is talking about it."

In Williams' neighborhood, the code of silence surrounding homosexuality and AIDS remains firmly intact. Several of his relatives, through an uncle, declined to comment for this article.

The man police identified as Williams' boyfriend is even more defensive. Although he told the police he had been dating Williams for three months, had a key to the apartment, and discovered Williams' body, he now denies that he and Williams had a romantic relationship.

Lawrence Hunt (below) says he started hooking up with Calvin Williams (above) at age 18.
Lannis Waters/The Palm Beach Post
Lawrence Hunt (below) says he started hooking up with Calvin Williams (above) at age 18.
Lannis Waters/The Palm Beach Post

"That is actually false information," he said when reached by phone. "We were not dating. Please don't call my phone again," he added and hung up.

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