ANNIE (Story)
Annie Elizabeth (Barber) Harrison
  • 60 years old
  • Date of birth: Dec 12, 1949
  • Place of birth:
    Chelmsford, Essex County, United Kingdom
  • Date of passing: Nov 2, 2010
  • Place of passing:
    Wichita, Kansas, United States
"Because of Annie" You were my Bright and Shining Star. I will love and miss you until my memory fades. Thank you for sharing your life with me. "Rock On, My Angel" Love you sweetie, Bobby xo

This memorial website was created on on 4 September 2011, in the memory of our loved one, Annie (Barber) Harrison, 60, born on December 12, 1949 and passed away on November 2, 2010. We will remember her forever.

ADDED 8 APRIL 2014:  My name is Blood Cancer, Color Me "Red." In the United States 1 person every 4 minutes is diagnosed with a blood cancer, while 1 person every 10 minutes dies from a blood cancer. My wife Annie was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a rare form of blood cancer.

There is no pre-screening for Blood Cancer, which opens the door to, often times a late diagnosis, especially with multiple myeloma patients. Dr. Moore Sr's nurse got it right on the day of Annie's diagnosis when she said, "We've been going over Annie's medical records for two days and can't figure out why she's still alive."  Annie hadn't been feeling well for over one and a half years and seen many specialists.  But for whatever reason(s) the general practitioner(s) didn't send her to the cancer center until it was way too late. So here's my suggestions.  If you're having any of these symptoms~~feeling unusually tired, anemic, bruise easily, experiencing bone pain, having kidney problems or too much calcium in the blood for no apparent reason based on your general practioners findings, ask to be referred to hematology/oncology for a study of your blood and a diagnosis. Annie broke four ribs on four seperate occasions for no apparent reason during the five month period prior to diagnosis, but it was written off as osteoporosis. Hopefully you won't have a blood cancer, but if you do, early detection can potentially save or prolong your life.

Am I Dying: This is a cancer trap:  The photo of Annie that navigated you to this page was taken two months to the day prior to her tragic diagnosis. She looks tired but beautiful.  And that alone deceives the doctors and gives them, along with the patient a false sense of hope for a diagnosis, sooner rather than later. In other words, too much time is wasted trying to fix a problem that is increasing becoming out of control and no one knows what it is. You must not let that happen. Be proactive in your healthcare.

This memorial is dedicated to Annie and the thousands of other folks that have either passed away, fighting a blood cancer or been recently diagnosed. Through Annie and some of the information contained within her memorial, it's just possible a life may be saved. Beyond that, I can be reached via an email through this memorial site. I can and will guide you in the right direction if you need help. Or go online at LLs.Org and find the entry that suits your needs. If you prefer you can call the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society at 1-800-955-45721-800-955-4572.  They deal with all blood cancers, and have a trained staff on duty from 9 A.M. to 9 P.M.  If your calling in the middle of the night you will get an automated message that can guide you to your local chapter of LLs. If your struggling for help it's important that you do this. I wish you the best. 

ADDED 3 APRIL 2014:  What is grief?  Overview:  In my opinion grief is a part of our body's self-defense mechansim, that allows potentially harmful feelings of sorrow to leave our body.  Anytime our body is overwhelmed with sorrow, through grief we have an emotional release, thus expressing our feelings, most often through our tears. In many cases we stay in touch with our loved one by looking at pictures, reading old notes, remembering the good times, sharing in our laughter, playing our favorite music, and whatever else we shared and enjoyed in life together.  My grief was driven by the love I shared with my wife Annie. And I do believe, the more we love, the more we lose, which equals a much longer and more difficult journey through our grief. Some folks never get over their grief, but thanks to our bodys resilience, we learn to get through it. In theory, the loss of a loved one can create a darkness that penetrates our soul, which becomes a measuring stick for our grief.  As the darknes slowly departs from our body a wonderful thing happends. Our grief starts to dissipate, and we can feel ourselves stepping out into the light. What I found amazing and unexpected was I had a strong sense that Annie stepped out into the light with me. So I realized it wasn't Annie that was keeping me in the darkness, it was me.  We all know our loved ones would certainly not want us to be sad, so why are we. Simply put, we loved and we lost~But in the end, although things can never be the same, we get better and once again find our purpose in life.

ADDED 7 APR 2014:  Breaking Down Grief:  It's important to understand when you started to grieve. The reason is simple. I started my journey with grief the day Annie received her diagnosis/prognosis. I was told privately that Annie would not survive her cancer. So it follows that at some point prior to a loved ones death, depending on the circumstances of the death (how quickly the death occured), grief will be firmly entrinched in your emotions and actions at the end of the journey. Can we control our grief?  Under certain circumstances we can, and in my case I had too.  Annie was terminally ill, and grieving in her own way. So it was important for her that I stuff my grief while she was grieving and fighting cancer. It wasn't easy but it came with the understanding that our journey was about her, and not me out. Here's a tip. If you need a good emotinal release as I did at times, just find a quiet place away from your loved one, and let your emtions come flooding out. It won't take long, and when you rejoin your loved one you'll be more composed, focused and able to help out.  As Annie's caregiver husband I had a ring side seat to everything that was going on. I instinctively knew that if I showed signs of weakness through my grief, it would allow her to become insecure, which is an emotion or fear that she didn't need while fighting her battle. And it would make her weaker in the long run. So here's the answer to the question about how long you've been grieving. This is what happened to me.  For the most part, but not always, I stuffed my grief for 30 months while she was fighting her disease. When she died, the old theory that I'd been grieving for 30 months, so my grief should be light, went sailing out the window. It was more like an explosion of emotions, that my mind couldn't digest, but there was no where else for them to go. I can tell you, that's not a good place to be. The pain was immense and it felt like the life was being sucked out of me. I just kept saying over and over, "I want her back." And that was just the beginning of my 30 month nightmare. Yes, that's how long it took for me to feel half way normal again. Having said that, I do know that everyone grieves differently and that there is no time limit on grief.

Grief & Mind Games:  In the beginning grief is like a mind game and will literally make you reflect back to things or events that you'd rather not think about. It seemed to me that the more traumatic the event was the more I focused on it.  And that's something I tried to avoid as much as possible, but grief is strong and it will fight back. Grief is so deceptive that it will try to convince you of things or events that you know were not true and perhaps didn't even happen.  What I'm saying is, grief will disrupt your thought process, and it can be a real battle at times to maintain control. Here's what I came to understand while fighting grief. It is very deciptive, but less complicated when we start paying attention to our feelings. It's truly a state of being and what you are feeling in grief is quite simply your way of dealing with your memories. I found that sometimes my memories didn't always set well with family and friends, as they just wanted me to move on.  And that's okay, but remember, their your memories and no one can take them from you. Also it's important to understand that most family and friends have no personal idea how you're feeling, as they are not you. Stay the course with your grief, and move forward at your own pace.  In the end you'll be glad you did. Healing takes time, and can't be rushed. If you need help with your grief, I can be contacted via email through this memorial site.

There is no better place to share in the love you had for that special someone then this site. It's called Forevermissed for a reason.  Our loved one will always be missed, and sometimes we just need a place where we can go and visit with that special person. Even though my grief is not as it was, and I can now wake up most morning's with a smile on my face, thankful for another day,  I would be lost without Annie's memorial to inspire, guide, and keep me focused on just how precious our lives truly are. We were never promised a tomorrow. When I brouse through Annie's memorial, even in the latter years of my life, I'll always know and be able to reflect back of the love this oridary man found in a beautiful woman. For my future family members that will never get to know and be loved by her,  Annie's memorial will become a priceless part of their history. I loved my grandmother very much, she was such an important part of my childhood.  She died when I was 9 years old. Fifty-six years later, all I have is simple little memories of love. I would love to have more, but that's not possible.  This memorial will forever be an addition to the family tree and be a well documented memorial of a very special family member for all to see and love. Priceless! 

ADDED 21 Feb 2014: On 15 Feb 2014, Annie was honored at Barnes and Noble via a book signing of her story~"Because of Annie."  The day was very special.  I signed books for 1 1/2 hours, then went over to the childrens area, where an area was set up for me to speak about "Because of Annie." A half-hour later I returned to the signing. The first person to buy a book after I spoke, was a lady sitting in the front row while I was speaking, and was a breast cancer survivor.  She told my daughter that listening to me made her feel like for the first time sinse she got the all clear, she was finally home. I don't know what she meant, and didn't ask her, but she was very emotionally distraught, and it seemed to give her comfort. To me,  sucess is defined by how many people I can reach out and touch through Annie's story.  It was a good day, and I saw many tears flowing. A few days later a man that read the book contacted me and said, I shouldn't be contacting you after reading what you and your beautiful wife Annie went through, but I'm scared.  Then he said, today I was told I'm dying.  I have cancer of the brain and its spread to the lumbar region of my back. What could I possibly say to a person in that situation?  The first thing I thought of was, where there's life, there's hope.  Hang in there, miracles happen everyday, maybe you'll get one. And then I spoke to him about Annie. She was always dying, but she never gave up, and fought until the end. He did say the story was very inspiring to him, but still, he was very afraid.  And who wouldn't be. 

The Kansas Chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society were at the signing too, in support of Because of Annie.  They felt it's a wonderful book for caregiver's or future caregiver's based on the story line.  Just about every experience I could have had as a caregiver, I experienced, and is in the book. I learned from my mistakes and greatest triumphs. A caregiver will never be defined by his/her mistakes, but will be defined by lack of caring. It can be a very tiring and thankless job at times, but the rewards of making a difference in someone's life is priceless. And being a caregiver for a loved one, is probably the most difficult and challenging position one will ever be in. It's very, and inhumanely painful. I got knocked down more than once, but as I said in Because of Annie, I got back up, dusted myself off, and got on with it. When you love someone, there is no other option. It becomes so natural to do what you have to do, to make the loved one feel safe and comfortable. "Because of Annie"

ADDED 20 Jan 2014:  Barnes and Noble Book Signing;  On Feb 15th, 2014, I'll be taking Annie's story~"Because of Annie" to a new level. With the support of our local Barnes and Noble Bookstore and the Kansas Chapter of The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society we're expecting a good crowd. Barnes and Noble will be running it on their website, and the Kansas Chapter of LL's will be sending out group emails throughout the local area and state. This book signing will be like Annie~so very unique. My signing table will have a 32" HD monitor which will be streaming her forevermissed.com memorial throughout the signing.  I'll have several 8x10 pictures of Annie, which I shall call, "the various stages of cancer." Some of the main characters in the story will be there as well to meet, greet, and visit with our guests. B&N will order in all books and be responsible for selling them. My share of any money received will go to help others less fortunate than Annie, which would please her as she always donated to cancer. Because of Annie is a tragic but inspirational story of a man and his wife that were married for 39 years, and fought blood cancer together until the end~forever falling deeper in love. It delves deeply into the world of care giving for a terminally ill cancer patient and in a sense provides a roadmap that will steer caregiver's away from many cancer traps. Annie and my biggest fear throughout her 30 month journey, was fear of the unknown.  Cancer does not come with instructions~nor does being a caregiver. When writing Because of Annie, my intention was to let the reader know things, that unless they've been there, they couldn't possibly know. Cancer promotes a very cold world for the unsuspecting patient, caregiver, and loved ones. If you're reading this entry, and recently suffered a loss, I'd like to say with all sincerity "that I'm sorry for your loss."  Always remember, that there is no right or wrong way to grieve, and do not let others define your grieving process. It's your loss, and you need to deal with it anyway you can; if you need professional help, please get it. I've been seeing my psychologist, Dr. Bryant, for over three years now. He, along with this memorial site allowing me to speak to her each day as often as I needed too, and writing Because of Annie saved me.  And I truly believe that.  I wish you well~

ADDED 12 Dec 2013:  "HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANNIE"

                                            "Because of Annie"

It been 3 years, 1 month, and 2 days since you had to go home. And I can say without reservation, I love you as much today as I did when we were together. Time is a good healer, but thankfully it was never intended to stop a person from loving someone that meant the world to them.  Love in its truest form knows no boundaries. So, as I've done since I created your memorial, I will visit you everyday, and be here at night to tuck you in. I love you Annie, and I'm so sorry I couldn't save you from that wretched cancer.  But know this Annie, I shall never forget that epic battle you fought, sometimes against all logic, and share your story everywhere I can, in hopes of inspiring  and helping others.  I shall never leave you.  I love you Sweetie.  "Bobby"  xoxo

ADDED 21 Nov 2013:  Excerpt from "Because of Annie" coming soon.

The setting is in my living room, Annie is in her hospital bed: It was now time to start comfort care (End of Life Care) which was being administered by my daughter Melissa.  We didn't use Hospice.

Excerpt:  I asked for some private time with Annie, and then laid my chest across hers, put my arms around her, and lost it.  I cried like a baby, as I was so hurt. I know it sounds like it's all about me, but that isn't even close to the truth. Over the course of the illness, Annie and I became one.  I hurt for her because she had to die, and for me, I was losing the love of my life. While I was crying, all I could feel was her right hand with the sports bandage on, rubbing me up and down my back. Annie was dying and comforting me. I gave her everything I had for thirty months.  In return, she gave me enough love to sustain me forever, and some of my most incredible memories. 

              As I rose up off her chest, I looked her in the eyes, told her I loved her, and she said, "I love you too."  I rubbed my hand across her forehead, letting it gently slide down over her hair. After a soft and tender kiss, I turned and disappeared into the dinning room.

              I truly believe in some way, beyond the imagination of many, I was kissed by an Angel.

              After I left the room, Melissa walked back into the room, told her momma she loved her, and immediately started comfort care.  The time was 2:00 P.M.

ADDED 14 Sep 2013:   "Because of Annie"

"If You Love Someone Today, Try to Love them More Tomorrow"

                              "Life Happens"

Written 9 Months Into Our Cancer Journey:  Annie was my bright and shining star, and I loved her more every day.  She was so helpless, defensless, and precious.  In my mind she was a true gift, and I was beginning to understand love in a way that many people never will.  As I was starting to find, true love penetrates deep into your soul.  There is no anger and no resentment.  It's not conflicting and I found it very spiritual. It seemed my goal in life was to keep Annie safe, and to share every minute I could with her in happiness. I always loved Annie, however, I have to realize and accept that I never really knew the true meaning of spousal love until now. As chaotic and sad as our lives were, we were always taking time to "Smell the Roses."  Sometimes we'd look at each other and laugh for no reason.  We'd both found the "Perfect Love," but what a price we were paying.

ADDED: 3 Aug 2013: ~Lost DVD~ On Dec 10th, 2008, while in the hospital, my daughter Melissa and Beverly, at my request, were going to set up a surprise birthday party for Annie. It was going to be held on the evening of the 12th, her actual birthday.  Annie had defied the odds a few times to get this far, so we all made an effort to make the party special.  During the party a DVD was made with some videos mixed with 220 pictures. The computer containing all the pictures and videos was unfortunately fried during a lightening strike and I lost everything. I was really upset when I looked for the video after she passed, as it contained the last recordings of her voice and the last chance to see her beautiful smile as it happened. After several months of searching for a copy of the DVD I gave up.  Now 32 months post death, my sister Marcy located her copy, and sent it to me.  I've had it two days now, and I have to say it's one of the greatest gifts I've ever received. It invoked many memories, and yes, many tears too. I purchased Annie a new candyapple red walker that you will see her using, making her walk to the surprise party. For some reason the video is in three short segments, but still, it's very beautiful and heart warming. Annie thinks she's walking to a traditional Christmas Tree lighting, her response when folks start singing happy birthday to her is "Priceless."  Keep in mind, the day before this party Annie received a very special gift too.  She was told she was in an improbable remission, after 6 cycles of chemo, 21 days on and seven days off. She had a very aggressive cancer, and when diagnosed was given 3 or 4 weeks to live.  So for this moment in time she was all smiles. 

ADDED: 6 May 2013:  Titled~"The Circle of Life."  When I started writing this memorial on forevermissed, I had many reasons for writing, but the true significance only came to me tonight. Today is our daughter Melissa's 40th Birthday. Bitter sweet day, but nothing compared to the event taking place on June 13, 2013.  On that day she is going to be induced in labor, and give birth to a healthy baby boy. This child is being gifted to this family through Melissa and her husband Van as a true sign that there is life after death.  He will be the first "Post Annie Era Grandchild." All the rest got to meet and be loved by her. He won't have that privilege, but through Annie's memorial he will come to know and love her through my writing, stories and many pictures. He will know things that would not or could not have been possible without her legacy.  With this new child, the "Circle of Life" will be complete. We lost someone that we all loved dearly, and this child will help this whole family heal in a way I would never have thought possible until tonight. I'm now going to start expanding the memorial to include  the family, as we're all connected in the circle.  Annie will be the missing link, but he will see her and know where it all started. I posted a picture of Melissa on here tonight in the gallery or under stories. From my heart, I know this is going to be so important for the child. Life can be a real mystery, but given time things come into focus.  You just have to find the direction, and I unknowingly found it here. I've been struggling lately, wondering when this would all end. Now I know, it's just the beginning of something very special, and I have a new sense of direction. June 2nd, 2013: First picture of Baby Beaux, is now posted under galery/photos this site. he's a cutie! Born 3 weeks premature!

ADDED: 4 Jan 2013:  For those of you that are hurting, or want to share in a loss you can email me via this site.  We all need to talk, and share, at some point in our grief.  It's taken me two years to come out of the darkness into the light, but I've made it, and everything is going to be okay for me, and in time for you too.

When I look around at other memorial sites, I can't help but wonder how so many beautiful people passed. Annie was unfortunate; all blood cancers are rare, but many can be successfully treated. Myltiple myeloma is in the family of blood cancers, but is not considered survivable beyond 2 to 5 years, with the rare exception. It is listed as one of the 4 nasty cancers. When diagnosed, Annie's prognosis was maybe 3 weeks, followed by "why is she still alive." Annie's journey lasted thirty months. Her oncoligist, Dr. Moore Sr., had been an oncologist for 39 years. He said Annie was probably the worst case he'd ever seen. She was a tennacious fighter with a strong will to live.  As you look through this memorial at her pictures, you'll notice that there is a story under each one. Pictures do tell stories.  My intention was, and will always be; helping others through her story.. 

When Annie passed the world lost one of it's little known, great humanitarians.  Not only to me, and my family, but to the unsuspecting stranger that needed some help, or just needed a compassionate ear, listening to and understanding their distress. She seemed to always have an answer, or knew where to find it.  She especially loved the children of the world.  If she could have, I am sure she would have bundled them up and brought them home with her, with a big smile on her face, all the love in her heart, and say to me, "look what we got."  She would have rescued them all.  Annie was a great loss to society, but where there is one there is more. I have to believe that! 

Annie was a uniquely different person!  She made it clear to me what her wishes were.  She didn't want a funeral. She wanted to be cremated as quickly as possible, as she didn't want to be in the morgue too long.  She wanted to be flown home to her motherland England and have her ashes sprinkled near her mother and two sisters.  She was cremated 22 hours after she passed, and at the 36th hour, she was back in our home.  A week later her ashes were flown to England and sprinkled in the beautiful "rose garden," at Chelmsford Crematorium where her mother and two sisters are resting, as she wished.  Love her!  xoxo

I've been on forever missed since Sept 4th, 2011!  I found it by accident.  This has been one of the greatest finds of my life.  When she passed on Nov 2, 2010, I was hurt, lost and in desperate need of guidance.  Then, one day I was searching the web for someplace I could write about Annie.  I stumbled onto forevermissed.com  which changed my life;  as I set up her memorial that day, I knew I would have a safe place to go and visit her as often as I liked.  Today is the 25th of May 2012.  I still miss her terribly, but having access to her on a daily basis helps with the grief. I know that now, because when I look at her I don't get that overwhelming feeling of sadness and tears.  I can now think of the happier times.  We were married 39 1/2 years.  Annie was special, as all loved ones are.

Sept 4th, 2012: Today was ANNIE'S ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY on forevermissed memorial web-site.  What a wonderful place to store memories to last a lifetime, and into the future for generations to come. I want to express my sincere thanks to the staff at forevermissed memorials for providing such a wonderful site. 

 On May 15, 2012 I started building a facebook cancer page, dedicated to my wife Annie. If you would like to view it, just click on this link.  www.facebook.com/BloodCancerAnnie  it will take you to her page. Please click on the "Like" icon if you like the page.

Feb 22nd 2013:  Coming out of grief In mid December 2012; I was fixing my breakfast and found myself singing and dancing around the kitchen.  When I realized what I was doing I felt a rush of panic come over me, so I took a seat in one of our dining room chairs. I needed to sit down and digest this strange new feeling in my head.  Apparently my emotional connectors were pulling me out of grief in a way I never expected. For a few minutes as I sat and thought about what had just happened I started getting sad, as I wanted to go back to the darkness where I felt I belonged and was my comfort zone. It didn't matter, my emotions were starting to drag me out of grief, and left me little choice but to move forward. In other words I couldn't go back even if I wanted to. After 25 months of relatively heavy grief I was getting well. I think my body's self defense mechanism was kicking in and telling me enough is enough. Two months later I feel reasonably well, and instead of grieving Annie, I find I'm celebrating her life. Grief is very selfish, unpredictable, and deceiving. It can keep one locked up forever, if the body doesn't take over and regulate ones emotions.  I know I will always grieve Annie, but it is different now. The overwhelming sense of loss is no longer there. I'm now of the understanding, if I had it to do over again, I would have fought more to celebrate her life, then to grieve her loss. Annie would not have wanted me to suffer the way I did.  I know that now.  We somehow have to learn to control our grief and not let it control us. I failed miserably at that, but there were no instructions on grieving.  I now have instructions. My hope is that if you get caught in the nightmare called grief, you'll try to prove my theory. Try to celebrate the life of your lost loved one, and stay out of that black hole as much as possible.  I know it won't be easy, but possible. This is just a theory, but I don't ever want to go back to the darkness again.

 

Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 22nd April 2014

"Hi Sweetie:  I read an article today from a lady that was diagnosed with multiple myeloma almost a month after you. She started her chemo the same time as you, and yes you both had the same chemo.  She's here to tell her story because she had an early diagnosis. You're not here because your general practitioners didn't understand or ignored the warning signs over the year and a half when you were always unwell. Despite all the unstable blood draws, the anemia, bruising easily, fatigue, they were inclined to believe it was in your head. Annie. I'm so hurt by such a near miss. One trip to the cancer center 6 months earlier would have made all the difference in the world. This day and age nobody should be diagnosed with end stage cancer when all the symptoms are presenting themselves. It's not right.  You never had a chance Annie. Yet, it's still happening to many, and with different cancers as well.  I'm so sorry baby, I didn't know.  All those nights I massaged your painful legs until you went to sleep, that triggered many events to the doctors.  The GP's said it was osteoporosis, the osteoporosis doctor said he could see it, but it wasn't bad enough to cause pain. It went on and on. Then you broke four ribs over four months for no apparent reasons. But once again, it was diagnosed as osteoporosis.  The cancer center knew at the time that multiple myeloma can be misdiagnosed as Osteoporosis, but you were never sent to the cancer center. Obviously the article I read today triggered many emotions in me, at what might have been if you would have been cared for properly by your GP's.  I love and miss you, Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 15th April 2014

"Hi Sweetie, Been home from my vacation a couple of weeks now.  I'm lonely, but okay.  Baby Beaux is starting to say a few words now.  The main word he says is, believe it or not, Hannah. He says Da-da & Ma-ma too, but Hanna is a big word.  She brain washes him. The day after I got back from my trip on the 2nd, I went down to see him.  After 30 days I was afraid he wouldn't know me.  But he did.  When his momma turned the corner with him in her arms he got really shy. Then he reached out to me and gave me a snuggle hug that was just priceless. He had tears in his eyes. That's not bad for a 10 month old. And, we got it all recorded and on facebook. I wish you were here to share in his precious little life. You were such a stabilizing force for all the grand kids~with a love second to none.  I love you Annie, Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 6th April 2014

"Hi Sweetie, you really do have a long reach.  A couple of months ago a lady from Rome got in touch with me, needing to share her recent loss of her husband with me. We're now friends, and although she is still struggling, Because of you Annie, I'm able to offer her help and guidance.  I could never measure my grief over losing you, but other than ending my life, I can't imagine it could have been any worse. I kept notes in order to track my grief, and ended up with more knowledge on the subject than I could ever have imagined. Now I have the knowledge and understanding to help others, and I do help many.  Anyway, in conversation I told her that you had always wanted to visit the Sistine Chapel.  Well, guess what.  I'm gonna make that trip for you, and my friend is going to be my guide. I've toured London & Amsterdam, now I shall tour Rome. I wish you could go with me.  But I suspect in some way you've met her Paul, and the two of you put her in contact with me. Maybe through my eyes you'll be able to see the chapel too.  I hope so.  My friend found me through this memorial.   Love you Annie, Bobby xo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 3rd April 2014

"Hi Sweetie, as you may or may not know my flight on the 1st had a weather cancel. I was a little bummed out as I was looking forward to getting home, but being of the belief that all things happen for a reason, I was okay with it. I boarded the plane on the 2nd at 1:30 P.M. Pacific time and arrived home 11:30 P.M. Central. When I arrived home from the airport our home looked lovely, and I had an immediate sense of relief, knowing this is where we made so many memories. I can't see you, but I can feel your presence. And as always, the first thing I did when I got in was what you always did.  Made a strong pot of coffee.  It's been a real treat setting in my favorite chair and sipping from the mug you bought me years ago. Good night my love, gonna get some rest, it's been a long day.  Love you Annie.  xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 1st April 2014

"Hi Sweetie, In 8 hours I'll be headed back to Kansas. Can't wait to get back to our old familiar surroundings, and once again lock myself back into my zone of comfort and your love.  I've missed wandering around our home, and often staring in amazement at the warm home you created for us. I know, it's only memories now, but there's nothing wrong with that. If one loved and lost, and didn't have memories of the love, what a cruel irony that would be. Getting through grief was very tough, but, on the other side of grief it's not so bad.  Grief, although emotionally destructive in nature, can't hold us back forever.  And when we come out, at least in my case, I once again see the truest form of beauty old mother earth has to offer. It is indeed beautiful Annie, but so were you.  I love you.  I'll write more when I get home and settled in. xoxo"

This tribute was added by laurel larison on 26th March 2014

"I was looking at my father in law tribute oliver larison. I came across this wonderful tribute for a mother who passed. I felt compelled to write something for one so wonderful. From reading all the tributes I felt she was so special and an angel. We believe that angels do walk or walked the earth and she surely seems like one. God bless you and I will say a prayer for her and the family. I know I didn't know her or the family but the Lord puts things on our hearts and wants us to be of comfort to others. I am sorry for your loss and I know there are angels that come back to help us and guide us. We may not know it now but they are with us always in our hearts but especially in our souls..... God bless."

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 26th March 2014

"Hi Sweetie, my trip to California is almost over.  Dad is still hanging in there, and wants to stay on this earth as long as he can. I had my doubts that he would make it through my 27 day trip, but it appears he will.  He has lost over 60 pounds, but as far as I can tell he is showing no signs of illness, other than being 86 years old. As for you my sweet, I've think  of you every day and will always have you safely tucked away in my heart. You know what?  When I go away for an extended period of time, and return home, I get that excited anticipation of seeing you, just to have the thought shattered by reality.  It's not easy without you. Good night my love, Bobby.  xoxo"

This tribute was added by allie barnes on 21st March 2014

"i know what your going throug im 12 and loseing my uncle to brain and lung cancer from smokeing"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 16th March 2014

"Hi Sweetie, I've been in California 12 days now, and it's been okay.  I  miss you, and always will. When my thoughts drift to you, my body still reacts the same way.  I feel the air being sucked out of me, so I shake my head from side to side and try to refocus on the reality that I'm living alone. I have to do that to stay grounded, otherwise I go too deep into the memories of us, it's still very painful...It's just so hard coming to terms with the facts.  You're gone forever, and will never be coming back. Hopefully, someday I'll be able to join you. That may just be a dream, but it's my dream.  Love you Annie, sweet dreams."

This tribute was added by Brittany Herrig on 12th March 2014

"I miss you Nanny."

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 4th March 2014

"Hi Sweetie, after two stress filled days, two flight cancellations due to the snow, I've finally made it to Northern California.  I went over and saw dad last night, it was a heart felt experience as I had thought when I was out here last year that he was on his way out.  At 86, he's lost a lot of weight, and talks a bit loopy at times, but that is to be expected. I'm gonna spend as much time with him as I can, and cherish the moments.  I love you, and wish you were here.  I'll keep you posted on my trip.  Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 28th February 2014

"Hi Sweetie, Heading for Northern California in a couple of days.  Going out to see Dad.  He's 86 years old now, and apparently lost a considerable amount of weight.  I think his Biological Clock has slowed down a bit.  I shall also spend as much time on the river as I can, trying to catch the elusive Steelhead. I received a nice email from our daughter Vicky yesterday.  She seems to be doing okay. I'm gonna spend more time writing to her as I've neglected her a bit since you've been gone. Annie, losing you really messed me up.  I've never known so much heartache.  I really didn't have much time for anyone, and you know that's true.  I was always thinking about you, and I guess feeling sorry for me. Grief in my case was tough, or should I say insanely bad.  Anyway, 3 1/4 years later I'm finally getting my life back in order.  Annie, spending time with you in grief was very real, and such a natural progression from your death. And although not buried in grief, I still feel your presence.  It's a wonderful feeling. I went to one of your favorite clothing stores a few days ago, and I could see you roaming from the clothes racks to  the shoes. Then on to the bedding and about everything else. All I could do was smile. What a blessing you were to me. I'll always love and miss you Annie, but life is getting easier.  Even 6 months ago I thought the Sun inside of me was never going to shine again.  It's not bright enough for you to see it yet, but you will one day.  Sweet dreams my love, I love you, Bobby XO"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 17th February 2014

"Hi Sweetie, Your story, "Because of Annie" was a hit at the Barnes and Noble book signing 2 days ago.  One and one-half hours into the signing I was the guest speaker for the event.  There was a lady sitting in the front row, and her tears were flowing as I spoke.  She told Melissa after I got through speaking she felt like she was finally home.  She had a terrible struggle with breast cancer, but was a survivor.  Your story touched her heart.  There was also an emotional young lady that had a chat with Melissa.  She was listening intently to Melissa talking about her momma, then with much emotion blurted out that she had survived Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (A Bad Blood Cancer). She said in a quivering voice she was told she would never have children, but she had a big tummy, and said the baby was beautiful and healthy.  It touched us all.  Those two ladies that were the most touched by your story, made the event very special.  Although your presence was not apparent, Melissa and I knew you were there with us, and reaching out and touching others. I love you Annie, and thanks for loving me.  Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 15th February 2014

"Hi Sweetie, I forgot to tell you.  Yesterday, 14 Feb was our grandson Andrews 22 Birthday.  When he went out yesterday it was cold, snow still on the ground.  Something very strange happened.  He found a lady bug on his finger.  That was the best birthday present he ever had, a gift from you.  You don't know this, or you may, but when you died on that cold Nov evening, against the odds, we found three or four lady bugs by you, two on your nightstand and one on the plant near you.  We also found one in a sympathy card a few days later. Don't usually see them during the cold season. Lady Bugs have a very special meaning, and were truly a gift to this family.  I love you, Bobby."

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 15th February 2014

"Hi Sweetie, tomorrow is the big day.  Book Signing at Barnes and Noble. "Because of Annie" is your story, and another part of your legacy. The past three years without you has been a long road.  I've done everything I can to educate folks on blood cancer through your story, hoping that it might make a difference, and maybe keep someone from having to relive your story.  I know you would want that, and I want it too. On the eve of the big event I'm feeling sad, and really missing you.  I wish there was no story, and it was just you and me as it was. We lived a good life, you kept us on track with a healthy nutritional life style.  I thought, as we were just 3 years away from retirement, we were getting ready to kick back and enjoy life to it's fullest. It was just an illusion.  Now I find myself all alone with loneliness in my heart, wondering what's next, and when will I see you again.  Still more questions than answers. I love you Annie, watch over me tomorrow with your Angel friends.  I love you, Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 10th February 2014

"Hi Sweetie, "Calling All Angels"  On the 15th of Feb I'll be doing my first book signing at Barnes and Noble.  The Kansas Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma society will be there in support of your story~Because of Annie.  They've read it and believe it has the capability of helping many people, especially caregiver's, dealing with cancer or terminal illnesses in general.  So gather up your Angelic friends and send a few visitors my way.  I'd love to meet them all.  But not just yet, if you know what I mean. :)   I love you darling, and will speak to you again before the signing.  Bobby  xoxoxoxo"

This tribute was added by Jan Wirch on 1st February 2014

"Bob its a given you will receive your wings, you are already an angel. 30 months of caregiving now your on to caring for someone else, your absolutely remarkable .I am sure Annie is beaming right now watching down on what your doing."

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 1st February 2014

"Hi Sweetie, I was driving home tonight from John's, and found myself having a running conversation with you.  During your 30 month battle with cancer, we talked about so many things, and got to say many of the things that we always wanted to say to each other but hadn't. Now your gone, and 3 years later, I'm still coming up with more questions than answers. But, I guess I'll have to wait until we meet again to ask you things that only you know the answer too. I miss you Annie, and wish I could hold and love you. I believe I'll see you one day, and that's what helps me keep going.  That's what faith is all about~it gives us comfort during a storm. Good night my darling, Love you, Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 1st February 2014

"Hi Sweetie, I'd like to introduce you to John. He's a 14 year old boy with Autism that I call a throw away child. I spend two to three hours with him 4 times a week after school so his parents can work. He's a good kid, but he's non-verbal so his care is challenging at times. He loves Hot Wheel cars~he has a couple hundred or more. We spend much of our time on the floor crashing them into each other, or just racing them around the room. He has an Ipad, and can communicate his thoughts on that, a bit, don't always know what he's trying to say. But he gets excited when he says, "John go get burger," he likes Burger King. Sometimes, if I have the time, I'll take him.  I'm learning from him.  No matter what he has to eat, it seems when he's done there is a 3 foot radius around his chair full of food bits. He has poor motor skills, so it's easy to see how that happens. It doesn't bother me, we just clean the mess. But he has taught me, with him I must always expect the unexpected. I love you, Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 24th January 2014

"Hi Sweetie, I had your Smart Memorial plaque, which is the one that has your picture on it and a QR code that can be scanned by smart phones which brings them to this memorial so the people looking at your place of rest can know a bit about who you are.  I had your sister Lesley stick it on your plaque on the crematoriums wall in your hometown in England.  I received an email from the County Council two days ago informing me that I had to have your individual plaque removed or they would remove the whole thing.  They said it doesn't comply with their scheme, and they have a duty to other plaque holders to keep them all the same. I went online, pulled up the crematoriums wall of plaques and found many of them have individual plaques with pictures on them. My friend says, it's all about the money.  They don't make hi tech plaques so I had one made for you.  And apparently they don't like it. They will make and sell me a low tech plaque that has a small portrait of you for about 500.00 or so. But I wanted something special for you. So, not sure what's going to happen, but I've looked at all their rules and regulations and have complied with them. Their just so old fashioned and stuck in their ways.  Eventually the younger generation that is tech savvy will take over the Council and see the beauty in a hi tech memorial plaque, that tells one what the persons site their visiting was all about. I love you Annie, Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 12th January 2014

"Hi Sweetie, I'm 12 days into the new year, and feeling calm. I made a new years resolution that I would never again sweat the small stuff, with the understanding that things which, were so important in life, no longer are. I guess part of that is due to my loss, as knowing that you're really gone and not coming back, makes me realize one shouldn't worry about meaningless objects or money. Cuz when I'm gone the money will be spent, and you'll love this, all the things that used to be our little treasures will probably end up in a garage sale for some lucky person to buy for a few pennies on the dollar. Maybe we can hook up in the afterlife and come down here and buy some of our stuff back. That would be fun. I love you Annie, and I'm trying to do everything I can to stay positive, but the loneliness is hell at times. It's my choice, and for now it's the right choice. Love you sweetie xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 1st January 2014

"Hi Sweetie, Happy New Year Darling!  This is the 4th New Year's eve I've spent alone, without your loving touch. It's not as bad as it was, but I wish you were here.  Taking care of you during your illness, as hard as it was at times, was nothing, compared to living without you. When I think of you I still get butterflies in my stomach, sometime letting my imagination put me in a place where you're still here, if only for a moment. I guess that's just a break from reality I need sometimes. I love you Annie. XO"

This tribute was added by Jan Wirch on 31st December 2013

"To the Harrison family... I looked after my husband for fifteen months, he passed away July 28 of this year, I am in the middle of your book, there is so much I can relate to in it. I am loving the reading. Your wife was a remarkable positive woman, which I am sure kept her here as long as it did. It shocks me someone can go thru all of it and not give up, I saw the same with my husband. My best friend from the 60s is going thru this now, her husband has multiple myeloma. She wants to see your website but I tell her I am not sure you should.Her husband is a three year survivor and is doing pretty good right now."

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 25th December 2013

"Hi Sweetie,  "Merry Christmas Annie."  Hope the heavens are rocking out today. This is my 4th Christmas without you, and it's better than it was, but will never be the same.  I miss and love you everyday, but it's especially tough at Christmas time.  I'm lonely for you Annie. I had Christmas morning with Mel and her family, to include our grandchildren. It was fun, but Melissa is really struggling. She found the long note you wrote to her in 1999, and it's really pulling at her heart strings. She misses her momma so much. Andrew really struggles too,
but we have little choice but to get on with each day, one day at a time. Love you sweetie,  Bobby  xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 22nd December 2013

"Hi Sweetie, been a tough night tonight, as we move closer to Christmas. I decided to go to church, and the message just made me a bit sadder.  I really miss you, especially during this time of the year.  You were always the hub of the wheel, and made sure everything ran smoothly, and no one got left out. Your loss has left a huge dent in everything I do.  At the moment I still lack the understanding as to why someone as healthy as you were, and so important to humanity could just be taken away in what I know now was the blink of an eye. I love you Annie, and I so wish I didn't have so many questions without answers. When I think about you battling cancer, sometimes I get carried away and excited as I get lost in the moment, forgetting that your really gone. Take care my love, and I'll see you in my dreams.  Bobby xoxo"

This tribute was added by Michelle Lisle on 20th December 2013

"Happy Christmas..Annie.Lots have gone on..Has am sure you know of...A proud Nanny to a Gorgeous little boy,A new book..your name and story the world knows of Annie Harrison,you must be very proud of your family .. party on Annie in heaven xxxxxx"

This tribute was added by Jackie Barber on 12th December 2013

"To my darling sister Ann Happy Birthday ,I can never forget yours Cause my chris was your Birthday pressy 35 years ago .i was thinking of the christmas we went to Lakeside christmas shopping to gether we were like little girls in a candy shop miss the fun we used to have as i havent had any fun since you left our world but i have wonderful warm memorys that no one can take away .Happy Birthday sis love you lots till we meet again.ps Merry Christmas xxxx"

This tribute was added by Michelle Lisle on 12th December 2013

"Happy 64th Birthday Annie,A Excuse to shake your Bobby upside down to Empty his pockets and go Shopping for Bargains..But god Had a place for you on the 12th December..And nobody could stop you from leaving your loving family ..God was calling you..But I bet Annie you be rocking the heavens today..Happy birthday sweet English lass...forever young. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 12th December 2013

"Hi Sweetie~"Happy Birthday Darling."  It's been 3 years, 1 month, and 2 days since you had to go home. And I can say with no reservation, I love you just as much now as I loved you when we were together. Time is a good healer, but thankfully it was never intended to stop a person from loving someone that meant the world to them. Love in its truest form knows no boundaries.  So, as I've done since I created your memorial, I will be here visiting with you every day, and back at night to tuck you in.  I love you Annie, and I'm so sorry I couldn't save you from that wretched cancer.  But know this Annie, I shall never forget the epic battle you fought, sometimes against all logic, and share your story everywhere I can, in hopes of inspiring and helping others. Love you Sweetie. XOXO"

This tribute was added by Carolyn Wheeler on 6th December 2013

"I was just looking at this website and came across your memorial . This is so beautiful ! She would be so proud of you! Once again, glad I happened along and saw and read this love story.Beautiful!"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 29th November 2013

"Hi Sweetie; Shared thanksgiving with Melissa, Van, and the four grand kids.  Van fixed a superb dinner, and we had a few laughs.  We Loved you in memory.  This was my 4th Thanksgiving without you, and if anything it gets a bit more difficult. It's been tough without you, and even tougher during the holidays.  I have no idea what Thanksgiving must be like in heaven, or if there is even such a thing.  Heaven would be full of different nationalities, some of which don't celebrate that holiday. I suppose it could get quite confusing for some.  So in my imagination I believe heaven only celebrates Christmas, the birth of "Baby Jesus."  If that is correct, send me a feather floating gently in the air.  I'll be watching for you.  I love you sweetie, xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 21st November 2013

"Hi Sweetie, won't be long now.  I'll be sharing you with many more people. Your inspirational story of "Because of Annie" will be published late December or Early January.  Haven't got an exact date yet.  I received a draft of the cover the other day and it is absolutely beautiful. I posted it on facebook, and the private messages started rolling in. I posted an excerpt from your book on my Fb wall, just over a short paragraph long, and I received this post from a gentleman in California on my wall: "Bobby, I'm a sobbing idiot right now."  Annie, you're inspiring people with just one paragraph. Imagine the impact your gonna make when they read "Because of Annie." For many it has the potential of changing their lives. I wish/I hope in someway you can see it. I love you Annie, and I'll keep you posted as things move forward. xoxo"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 11th November 2013

"Hi Sweetie, Another year has come and gone, the autumn leaves are falling and our yard looks beautiful.  Andre has been here for a week now, and we've had a real good laugh. We talked about you and his mum, your sister Wendy who also passed from cancer. It's very comforting having someone here that was so close to us and whom we both love. We shared good memories. Luv U,sweet dreams. XO"

This tribute was added by Michelle Lisle on 2nd November 2013

"A beautiful English lady lost her fight for life three year ago..I know her husband Bobby,And her family miss her all so so so much...Let the memories of her keep you all going..Annie your husband has a heart of gold..And you are a amazing woman..you held on to life has long has you could..A pleasure to met you and your loving family xxxxxxxxxxxx"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 2nd November 2013

"Hi Sweetie, Three years ago today, my world changed forever, and this day will forever be known as the day Annie received her Angel wings. Annie, I love you as much now as I did then. Grief has been hell, and I'm beginning to think I understand what it's really about. It's about love Annie.I believe the more you love, the deeper you'll grieve. We don't see tomorrow, we only see today.LUV-U"

This tribute was added by Pattie Goodfleisch on 2nd November 2013

"Hey Annie, i already know you are an amazing woman. Having a book coming out and all. I cant wait to get my autographed copy by your super amazing husband. I also have a super amazing husband up there with you. Tell Jack hello for me. So now i know 2 really super people in heaven.  Thinking of you and your beloved Bob on year 3.  hugs to you Annie."

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 31st October 2013

"Hi Sweetie, it's that time of the year again; it will soon be your 3rd Anniversary of "Life After Death."  I just can't accept that when we pass on, there is nothing left waiting for us but a hole in the earth. I know, to many that is not the case; but I believe it is, and to me that's what makes life worth living.  Looking to the heavens, there has to be more; so complex. I Love You xoxox"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 22nd October 2013

"Annie, two days ago Hannah, Andrew and I went to the Annual Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Light the Night Walk, which is their biggest fund raiser of the year.  It once again brought back beautiful memories of our first walk with you when you were wheelchair bound back in 2008. Except then we had a whole group of people with a big banner that said, "Annie's Angels."  What a night. LUV U"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 22nd October 2013

"Hi Sweetie, we're now approaching the third anniversary of your passing.  It seems like it was only a short while ago.  I never thought I'd ever make it this far.  But I did, and still sharing your story.  You're touching so many people.  Cancer seems to be everywhere these days; I wish instead of having to find a cure, they'd just get rid of the things that cause it. I love you    Baby.XO"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 11th October 2013

"Hi Sweetie, The past two months I've had the pleasure of taking care of an Autistic child every Thursday and Friday afternoon.  His name is John.  He's fourteen years old and is non verbal.  Him and I have a blast together.  He's so funny at times, and carries an innocence that you would truly love. He's the second Autistic child I've cared for; nobody seems to want them. I do! Love you"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 29th September 2013

"Hi Sweetie, spoke to my editor Friday, and was told I'd possibly get the edited copy of "Because of Annie," back this weekend.  As soon as I get it, I have to give it a quick look over, then it goes to the publishing company for what they are saying will be a Christmas release. So many more people are going to be touched by your story. Your character during cancer was amazing. I love you X"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 22nd September 2013

"Hi Baby, Spent the day with our daughter Melissa, little Baby Beaux and Gracie. We had a good day, talked a lot about you, and wishing you could be here to see this little baby smile. You would have adored him. He's big, 3 1/2 months old and 19 pounds. Annie, I think of you every day, and am always left feeling the same way; I wish I could see you, hold you, and touch you. I love you Bobby"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 12th September 2013

"Hi Sweetie, I'm really missing you tonight.  When I write about you to others on various sites, telling them your story of so much love and hope, while on your journey through cancer, it really makes me sad. Guess that's the price I pay for sharing you with the world. Annie people are visiting you from all over the world.  Your star shines bright. I love you, and always will. Sweet Dreams"

This tribute was added by Marcy Bohannon on 10th September 2013

"Annie, It is bitter sweet knowing that God loved you so much that he used cancer to get your attention. He wanted you to know Him and love Him so that you could spend eternity with Him. You lost the battle with cancer but you won eternal life with your heavenly Father. I am certain that many lives were changed for the better as they watched how courageously you fought the fight.  Love you"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 30th August 2013

"Hi Sweetie, "Because of Annie."  That's you kiddo.  When you were diagnosed with multiple myeloma, you agreed to let the scientists follow your case.  At that time there was no hope for survival of this cancer.  2 years later things have changed dramatically. Over half the newly diagnosed patients will now live 5 + years LUV U Thanks"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 21st August 2013

"(Cont from Previous Tribute) these kind of miracles before, but in all his years as a cardiologist had never seen one.  His heart is that of a 27 year old, with absolutely no damage from the heart attack, no blockages, no stints, no heart disease and had shrunk in size. His only explanation was "God." Amazing! Love you xoxo
."

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 21st August 2013

"Hi Sweetie, Van went in on Monday and had his heart checked, the ultrasound showed his heart was still enlarged by 20%, as diagnosed 5 years ago when he had 3 stents put in. Guess what, Dr. Fahart who saw his enlarged heart 5 hours earlier, when he did the catather it was of normal size and the stents were gone. Melissa asked him how that could happen, and he said he'd heard of (cont)"

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 12th August 2013

"Hi Sweetie, Last Saturday Melissa's husband Van had a heart attack.  He surivived, and a few hours later with no sign of heart damage, left the hospital. He refused to stay. He's been on Nitro spray all week, and going in at 8 AM this morning for some tests, which I'm  sure will lead to more stents.  He's already had three.  I write about you every day, I'm really missing you. I LUV U XO"

This tribute was added by Brittany Herrig on 10th August 2013

"You are the stars to me, you are the light I follow.
I will see you again,this is not where it ends.
I will carry you with me, till I see you again.
Sometimes I feel my heart is breaking, but I stay strong and I hold on, because I know. I will see you again.
I love you Nanny."

This tribute was added by Bob Harrison on 3rd August 2013

"Hi Sweetie, had a little miracle happen today.  The video we took of your surprise birthday party back in Dec 2008, after searching for several months I received a copy of it in the mail today from Marcy. It's got 220 pictures, and 4 priceless videos.  I've looked at it over and over. Hearing your voice, seeing you smile as it happens is humbling and a true blessing. I love you darliing XO"


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