ST. CLOUD -- After the untimely death of its owner in July, Jeff's Tattoo and Total Body Piercing in St. Cloud shut its doors for good, however, one of Jeff Hunstiger's long-time artists is trying to - in part - carry on his legacy.

Erik Cagle is the owner of the soon to open Purple Pain Tattoo Studio. Cagle says, losing both Jeff, and the shop over the summer was very difficult.

"It was hard, the first week was Jeff's passing and getting over that, and his memorial and doing that. Then on Monday, I found out... we're not gonna keep the shop going. So that was almost like a second death."

Cagle says he's been able to both buy and been gifted equipment from the old shop from Judy Hunstiger. He says she's also given the new shop her blessing, which Cagle says was very important to him.

Cagle says the name of his new shop comes from the contrasting meaning of the color purple and the process of getting a tattoo.

"Purple is a calming color, I like that. But it also has another meaning, purple being a tranquil color and then pain being the opposite of that. But most people think when you get a tattoo you get that calming effect, on some people."

Cagle worked for Jeff and Judy Hunstiger for over 15 years. He says his experience gives him the ability to give you almost anything you'd like in a tattoo.

"I like to do everything, I don't like to be put into a box of saying 'I only do this, I only do that'. I can do a lot of different things, yes there are some things I won't do, but I've been doing it for 18 years so I know what works and what doesn't."

Eventually, Cagle wants to have both another full-time tattoo artist and a piercer so he can offer the same services Jeff's did.

Right now, he is waiting on licensing from the state, and will officially open the shop when that comes in, which he says will hopefully happen this week. Purple Pain is located at 1621 West St. Germain.

Photo: Richard Leguil, WJON