In The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian, how do people's deaths change Junior's life?

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teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Junior learns through the deaths of people close to him that he should make the most of his life and seek opportunities to make his life more prosperous.  Junior has had to live through the deaths of those close to him, including his sister Mary, his grandmother, and his uncle Eugene.  All these deaths in some way have been related to alcohol.  Junior learns through his grieving that he needs to make sure that he does not get stuck in the vicious cycle that ensnares so many people on the reservation.  Junior understands that many people resort to alcohol to cope with poverty and lack of opportunities, so Junior decides to keep up his own hope for a better future.  Junior's sense of hope drives him to seek better opportunities for himself, namely the chance to go to Reardan for a better education.  Junior does not want his own life to be sucked into the perils of alcoholism, and the deaths of his loved ones have motivated Junior to seek opportunities for himself.

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