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What Cherry means here is that she was really in love with Bob. She is saying that he wasn't just any boy -- he was someone special.
This comes about because Pony asks her if she's going to go visit Johnny in the hospital. She says she can't because he killed Bob. She knows that Bob did bad things. She knows that he was the one who beat Johnny so badly. But she blames that on alcohol and wonders why people sell to teens.
When he wasn't drunk, she says, he was really nice -- better than the other people in her crowd.
So what she's saying is he was special and that's why she loved him.
Cherry states she knows she is too young to be in love but that Bob was someone special - not ordinary. She felt he had great qualities except when he was drinking. While she knows Bob beat Johnny literally to death, she did not want to look at the person that killed Bob.
Cherry was very much a realist and considered more facets of a person than most people her age would. She was able to see what Bob was and would eventually become had he not been killed.
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