Busier junctures sport malls, with Wal-Mart and Staples and Home Depot and Circuit City and Bed, Bath, and Beyond or the equivalent-and always, everywhere, the encroaching concrete barriers and crusted belching steam shovels and trucks wrecking and raking roads "to serve you better." Anonymity is a strange fate for the hero of Buena Vista, a president so popular that, after his death-of cholera-16 months into his term, the funeral procession stretched nearly two miles, with tens of thousands of mourners lining the route. ("If a rabbit has to climb a tree," she'd later explain, "he'll climb a tree") John edits a newspaper of which his father, John Sr., is publisher, a younger brother co-publisher, another brother the former editor, his mother a popular columnist, and in which other relatives fill other jobs; a newspaper so woven into the fabric of Greene County it is hard to imagine life here without it.
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