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Tuesday, March 28, 2006 - Page updated at 07:28 AM

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Melissa Moore, 14, remembered as loving and generous

Seattle Times staff reporter

Melissa Moore was 14.

She was petite, maybe 116 pounds, a little shorter than her mother, but tough and strong-minded, her family said.

The girl from Milton, Pierce County, loved dancing and started coming to the city for rave parties with older friends about four months ago. She went by the rave name Chinadoll.

Today, Moore's family visited the scene of the massacre on Capitol Hill to place flowers and a photograph of their daughter.

"I just want her to be remembered as a sweet girl, and she didn't deserve any of this," her father, Kyle Moore said. "Nobody deserves to be shot like this. I mean he didn't just shoot her once, he shot her twice. A little girl."

Melissa Moore was loving and generous, Kyle Moore said, the kind to give away her bottom dollar or lend a coat to someone she'd just met.

Separated from the friends who ferried her to the rave at Capitol Hill Arts Center, she stuck with two other teenage girls from Bellevue, he said. At the end of the party, they were stranded.

They were invited to the blue house on East Republican Street.

"Whoever invited her probably felt sorry that they had to wait until six or seven (a.m.) for a bus to come by," Kyle Moore said. "Evidently she didn't want to call me to wake me up, which I've told her 50 million times: If you need me, I'm there. I don't care what time it is."

When he hadn't heard from her by morning, "I could feel something, just not right," he said.

Sometime during the night, Melissa had given one of the other girls her jacket. Her cell phone was in the pocket.

Kyle Moore couldn't reach his daughter. He searched for her all day Saturday at friends' homes, the Puyallup Mall. On Monday he was wearing one of his daughter's large T-shirts that "still smelled like her. I even slept in her room."

A police detective called him with the phone number of the girl who had his daughter's cell phone.

"She escaped. She came within inches," Moore said. "She got a hold of me because she has my daughter's cell phone." He did not give her name.

Melissa Moore was in ninth grade at Columbia Junior High School in Fife.

Her older brother, Cameron, said the two of them liked to watch movies and play video games together. Melissa also played chess, Cameron said.

Melissa Moore was funny and unique and known for speaking her mind, said Alisha Hallstrom, 15, a friend of Moore's at Columbia.

Most of Moore's friends were in high school and Moore was into partying, Hallstrom said, adding that Moore sometimes seemed unhappy.

She said Moore's blunt manner and "goth" clothes turned off some kids at the school. Still, the two of them were close:

"She was wonderful."

Administrators at Columbia sent home a letter about Moore's death with students at the school on Monday, said Jeff Nelson, the principal. He wouldn't comment further.

Kyle Moore, a long-haul trucker, said his daughter loved to travel. He intends to have her cremated, and carry her ashes to Florida. The family went to Disneyworld for Melissa's birthday last year.

"She really enjoyed it. She liked the people," he said. "That's the only thing I can think of, what she would want."

Benjamin J. Romano: 206-464-2149 or bromano@seattletimes.com

Seattle Times staff reporter Emily Heffter contributed to this report.

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