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John Byro was a farmer who was friends with Uncle Khrosove. He comes to visit the Uncle to talk about his white horse which has been stolen by the boys. John Byro knows that the horse was stolen by the boys, so it seems that his visit is motivated to force the issue of the boys' coming clean. His purpose in the story is to represent the sense of community and the ability to forgive, as the boys return the horse back towards the end of the story. While Byro knows the boys took the horse, he doesn't go after them in a punitive manner, but rather uses the opportunity as a "teachable moment" about right and wrong behavior. Byro's purpose shows the mutual benefit of the experience with the horse. The boys understand the lesson, and Byro benefits because the horse has become better conditioned and more willing to work with others, an overriding lesson for everyone in the story.
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