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  1. One of my story keepers is. An eight by fourteen plastic box. It holds a story of my mother’s cousin, World War II ace, the genealogy of her father and the story of her grandmother on her mother’s side. Grandma crossed the plaines as a sixteen year old; she told the story many times until her death in the 1920s. I have read the story more than once and find it a little different with each person who wrote it down. One thing that strikes me is the other travelers who are mentioned briefly, such as the widow who lost her husband and finished the trek with her three young children.
    This is when I become the keeper of stories; the widow is the inspiration. I imagine what her life could have been. In my mind she becomes real. The situation gives her reason to be grim, stoic, and misunderstood. She remarries and becomes a mother of nine. How could she be cheerful and fun loving? A different character might have, but not this lady. It took the discovery of a secret to open her up to be the the person she really was. Thus I am again the keeper of the story, because only I know the details and results of this bit of historical fiction. J

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