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  • Today was a particularly challenging day. One of those days where you feel like you need a hug. But not just any hug; A HUG!

    My favorite hugger and supporter of all my difficult days was my Aunt Loretta. Simply put, she was wonderful. She had a loud laugh that made everyone chuckle, she loved people, and when she hugged you to her bosom you were enveloped in her special kind of super hero protector power where you knew you were safe and loved.

    When I was a little girl I often visited her. Aunt Loretta lived at the top of a giant sledding hill in Peru, Indiana. All the children for miles and miles around would come to sled and eat cookies with her in the snow. She taught English and helped many of the cousins and neighbors with their school work when needed.

    Whenever I had a horribly sad day, I knew I could call her and she would say, "Now Shawna, you can't feel sorry for yourself! You can do anything you put your mind to and I know you can do it. Get up off your ass and go out there and DO IT! I believe in you!"

    And the thing was - she meant it. Aunt Loretta was not just telling you something to make you feel better. She was telling you the truth from her heart.

    I miss her soul; she really made a difference in my life personally.

    Someday, when I grow up, I hope to be half as good as she was as an aunt and a person. I miss you Aunt Loretta.
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