“My heart ached as I sat in the old wooden porch swing overlooking the lake. It had been two months since my older sister, Deanna, was killed in a car accident, and I was drowning in grief. To feel closer to her, I’d driven to our lake house where we’d spent every summer since we were kids, swimming, chasing fireflies, watching the sunset.
“I thought back to one evening when I was 9: I was sitting in the same porch swing, crying because some kid had called me ugly. That’s when Deanna had hugged me and told me the story of an ugly duckling that had turned into a beautiful swan. From then on, I’d say, ‘Tell me the swan story, Dee!’ when we’d sit in the swing. She’d just laugh and launch into the tale.
“Now as I sat in our swing, tears rolling down my cheeks, I prayed that she was safe in the arms of Jesus. ‘Tell me the swan story, Dee,’ I choked through sobs. Just then, I looked up to see the most beautiful white swan glide into view. I’d never seen one on this lake before. Suddenly, I felt my sister’s presence surround me like a warm hug, and I realized our love would never die.”
—Faye Fletcher, 47, Bristol, NH