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Jackie: a `profile in courage'

WHEN her husband won the Pulitzer Prize for writing ``Profiles in Courage'' nearly 40 years ago, little could Jacqueline Kennedy have known how fitting a title that would be for her own life.

Suffering the unthinkable on that November day in Dallas, she displayed a dignity that touched the hearts of a sundered nation. The mind's unending slide show flickers like the eternal flame at Arlington: the shrouded first lady, steeling young Caroline and John-John against a whirlwind of grief.

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She was a mother to us all during that gray weekend, in fact, holding her sorrow inside so we could purge our own. Many were selfish enough to believe that they were the ones whose dreams were shattered, and Jackie - not wanting to cheat them of their moment -

readily offered a broad shoulder to catch the tears.