Life Advice

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Health & Spirit

Widow wants to part with late-husband's trophies

By Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: My husband passed away a year ago and left behind many awards, trophies, certificates and plaques.

Our kids, like others of their generation, just are not that interested in collecting things, and the grandkids (also) could not care less.

Any suggestions on what to do with all of this? What do others do in this situation?

-- Wondering Widow

Dear Wondering: My first suggestion is that you photograph all of these items and create a paper and online album of them.

You should do this for the simple reason that all of the people who don't want these material things (now) will definitely want to have access to the fact that they exist -- if not now, then at some point in the future.

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This is a record of a person's movement through his life, and because these awards and recognitions differ from his personal achievements (I assume), they are more than dust catchers -- they are part of an historical record. Your husband might have been a beloved "ordinary guy" -- a husband, father and grandfather -- to the people in his family, but he was also involved and recognized outside of his family.

Maybe these mementos are small potatoes (you don't say), but it sounds like the man who earned them led a life of consequence.

After you photograph them, you should keep one or two of these awards that you like or that he was particularly proud of.

You could contact the individual organizations that awarded these to see if they would like them returned (they could display or reuse them).

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