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The family situations of Dill and Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird could hardly be more different. While Scout and Jem are forced to grow up without their mother, who died of a heart attack when Scout was just a baby, they are fortunate to have a father as caring and devoted to them as Atticus. He provides them with a wise Negro maid, Calpurnia, and he serves as an example to his children by the actions he takes. He spends time reading with Scout each night, and he always makes time to talk with them and offer his advice. Dill, on the other hand, has both a father and mother, but neither of them seem willing to spend much time with him. They shower him with presents and send him to the movies, but they actually prefer to spend their time without Dill, taking trips together while sending Dill away each summer. Dill creates fantastic stories about his life in order to deflect the truth, but Jem and Scout see through most of them. Dill is one of the most sympathetic characters in the novel, and one of the human mockingbirds who bring no harm to people yet suffer from the actions of others.
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