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27 September 2006



very once in awhile I come across something nice that I think you should read. Today, I'm sharing a good one.

SYRINGA, Idaho - It was a ricochet nearly 50 years in the making. At age 8, Terry Jackson gave up his prized .22-caliber Winchester short-barrel rifle to get his grandmother a washer. Recently, the 57-year-old got the gun back through a series of chance encounters and conversations.

"I didn't even have much reaction," said Jackson. "I was so dumbfounded."

As a boy, Jackson felt bad that his grandmother was too poor to have a washer. So he took the rifle he had earned money for by mowing lawns and doing other chores to a pawn shop.

"That was the only thing I had that was worth anything," Jackson told The Lewiston Tribune.

The pawn shop owner agreed to trade a wringer washer for the rifle. When the washer was delivered to his grandmother, Edna Jackson, she refused it until realizing the sacrifice her grandson had made.

"She just couldn't believe it," Jackson said.

The rifle, meanwhile, remained with the pawn shop owner, Bill Jackson. He never sold the rifle, instead giving it to family friend James Grow in the 1980s, recounting the story that accompanied the rifle.

"He told me the story but I never thought anything about it," Grow said. "I didn't even know who Terry Jackson was at the time, although Bill did tell me his name."

Grow said Bill Jackson told him the gun might be worth something someday. He never shot the rifle and kept it in his closet.

Grow become an attorney in Lewiston, and Terry Jackson recently hired Grow to do some legal work. The connection might not have been made about the rifle except for a conversation Becky Brotnov, Terry Jackson's companion, had with Grow during a business lunch.

She told the story of Terry Jackson giving up the rifle to get the washer.

"All of a sudden it dawned on me, I own the gun," Grow said.

After hearing the story, Grow said he knew he wouldn't keep the gun. So he recently drove to Terry Jackson's home to return the rifle.

"That was a really nice thing he did for his grandma," Grow said.

I just had to look up the census data for this town. I can't imagine this ever happening in Philly, Houston or New York. The population is 270. I imagine everyone is practically related to everyone else in the town.

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