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Echoes That Follow — By John Reed

Echoes That Follow
I’ve written before about the digital “echoes” people leave behind, even after death. For example, Facebook still eerily reminds me of birthdays of lost loved ones.
There are other more tangible echoes. At least once a month, I get mail from one charity or another in my mother’s name…she passed in 2008. An elderly neighbor used to run his golf cart around my neck of the woods, followed by his dogs. Even now, his faithful canines make their daily route, echoing the path he led.
For many, the most distinctive echoes we leave are the impressions we leave on others. This is all the more true for teachers: the impact they leave on students can last for generations.
Our children and their descendants are probably the most visible reminders of who we were and what we did. Often it’s things we don’t even remember that affect them the most. An off-hand comment at the a crucial moment can stick with a child well into adulthood. For better or worse.
I’m sure 50 years from now, my great-great-grandchildren will wonder what in the world I was thinking when I did this or bought that. Hopefully they’ll also thank me for something, however small.

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