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Back in California, Cunanan bounced up to San Francisco in the early '90s, where he lived off older men whenever he could. Though his mother has described him to reporters as "a high-class male prostitute," none of his friends thinks he rented by the hour. His wealthy lovers gave him the money for his expensive clothes and the $1,000 restaurant tabs he would pick up for groups of friends. Cunanan was presentable, sufficiently well informed about politics and the arts to make conversation, and given to conservative, preppy clothes, or sweatshirts and a baseball cap. Versace's glam merchandise was not his style. All the same, nobody describes him as reserved. Jesse Cappachione, manager of the Midnight Sun, a bar in the gay Castro district, says that from 1990 to 1992 a well-dressed Cunanan turned up almost every night to buy drinks for everybody. "He was boisterous and always seemed to be smiley," says Cappachione. "His laugh was very distracting. You could hear it in almost every corner of the room."
After returning to San Diego, Cunanan reportedly took up with Norman Blachford, a semiretired businessman in his late 60s with an ample, Venetian-style home on the ocean in La Jolla. He is said to have given Cunanan a dark green Infiniti and a monthly allowance as high as $2,500, and to have taken him to Paris. "Andrew always had an air about him," says waiter Jim Allen, who knew Cunanan in San Diego. "'Out of my way--I'm really busy right now. I'm wearing very expensive clothes.' He had one of those large, checkbook-size wallets. He'd open it, and you'd see rows of platinum credit cards. They were all in his name."
What he did not seem to have was much success with men closer to his own age. He complained that he couldn't get dates. Still, Monique Salvetti, 31, a close friend of Madson's, says Cunanan did meet Madson last year during one of Cunanan's stints in San Francisco, when Madson was there on business. "But there wasn't very much continuity in their relationship," she says. To complicate things, at some point Madson was introduced to Trail, perhaps by Cunanan. A 1991 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Trail had been stationed in San Diego. When he got out of the Navy he was briefly a trainee in the California highway patrol.
By November, when Trail moved to Minnesota, Madson had lost interest in Cunanan. "He suggested there was something about how Andrew sustained this lavish life-style," recalls Salvetti, "that he might be involved in something illegal." Cunanan's relationship with the older Blachford also eventually fell apart, adding to Cunanan's devastation. By spring, friends say, he was taking the pain killers he sometimes sold to make money, adding vodka to his usual straight cranberry juice and sleeping late into the afternoon.
To get a one-way ticket for his April 25 flight to Minneapolis, Cunanan had to beg his credit-card company to allow one more purchase on his card, which was over the $20,000 limit, friends say. That weekend he stayed first with Madson at his apartment in a trendy warehouse district. Around 9:30 on Sunday night, neighbors heard shouts and thudding noises coming from the apartment, then the sound of running water. When Trail's body was found, investigators saw that his watch had stopped at 9:50 p.m.