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Cpl. Aaron Mankin, Brilee Coursey, Hunter Mankin and Maddie Paige Mankin

Retired USMC Cpl. Aaron Mankin, pictured with Brilee Coursey, 7, left, Hunter Mankin, 4, center, and Maddie Paige Mankin, 5, right, pose for a picture during the Joffrey Ballet's Nutcracker Family Dinner at the Palmer House on Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012, in Chicago. Joel Wintermantle, Chicago Tribune