A Soldier’s Requiem, Never Fading Away
New York Times
By JAMES DAO
Published: January 12, 2013
WOODBRIDGE, Va. — Each December, Jackie Finken pulls plastic bins from the basement and distributes carefully wrapped Christmas decorations to her three daughters. Each girl has her own ornaments. And each of those ornaments has a story. That is a Finken tradition, one of many.
So there Mrs. Finken was on her kitchen floor a few weeks back, telling tales. About the treble clef that she and her husband, Paul, gave Emilie, the cheerful eldest, when she started loving her violin. About the Cinderella they gave to Caroline, the cranky middle one, when Disney princesses were all the rage. About the mouse they gave to Julia, the mischievous youngest, the year a brigade of vermin feasted on her candy stash.
Suddenly Julia stopped to ponder a decoration adorned with a tiny soccer ball, baseball mitt and football. It belonged to her father, the coach. “Should I hang this one?” she asked her mother. The answer, of course, was “Of course.”
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