Washington Township
17 and 20-76-13


Rice Cemetery is three and one-half miles southwest of What Cheer. From the Opera House corner, drive south one-half mile, then west on the gravel road for two miles, then south on the gravel one mile. Turn left (east) into the lane that leads to the cemetery and drive for about 55 rods or 1/6 of a mile.

Physical Features

Rice Cemetery is a well cared for cemetery, receiving township care. It is completely fenced with an entrance gate from the lane. It is on a hilltop area and practically level. There are five evergreens, with small trees and shrubbery in the fence rows. The unrestricted view of the surrounding farm land lends to the serene atmosphere of the area. It is a beautiful spot.

[3 Pictures not Available]


Land Description

Jason Rice and wife,                                                                                 Warranty Deed
Julie Rice                                                                                                   Consideration: $1.00
                                                                                                                    Dated Jan. 17, 1858
to                                                                                                                 Recorded Sept. 11, 1858
                                                                                                                     Deed Record I, page 252
Lewis Gregery,
Wesley Rosel, and
Robert Waddell, of Washington
     Township, as Trustees and to
     their successors in office

Description: Commencing at the stake 55 rods from the section corner between 17 and 20, running East, thence South 8 rods, thence East 10 rods, thence North 8 rods, thence West 10 rods, to the place of beginning in Section 20, Township 76 North, Range 13 West of the 5th P.M. Said land is transferred to said trustees for the purpose of being used for a burying ground.

+ + +

John C. Tibbets and wife,                                                                        Warranty Deed
Martha W. Tibbets                                                                                   Consideration $15.00
                                                                                                                   Dated Feb. 28, 1871
to                                                                                                                Recorded Reb. 26, 1872
                                                                                                                   Deed Record V, page 498
Trustees of Washington Township,
   Keokuk County, Iowa

Description: Commencing at the section corner at the Southwest corner of Section 17, Township 76 North, Range 13 West of the 5th P.M., including one rod in width off of the Southwest Quarter of the Southwest Quarter of said Section 17, running thence East 55 rods, thence North from said section line 4 rods, thence East 10 rods, thence South 4 rods, to said Section line, thence West to the place of beginning, to be used as a public burying ground.

+ + +

On Aug. 6, 1889, there was filed in Plat Book 2, page 62, in the County Recorder's Office a plat of the Irregular Survey of the Southwest Quarter of the Southwest Quarter and the Northwest Quarter of the Northwest Quarter of Sections 17 and 20, Township 76 North, Range 13 West of the 5th P.M. J. H. Killmar, County Surveyor, on August 17, 1887, certified that he made the plat according to descriptions on deeds for the land owners and at their request and that the plat is a correct representation of the above described land. On May 22, 1888, J. N. Dugger, E. A. Dugger, Martin Hawk, and Nancy Hawk certified that they were the owners of the Southwest Quarter of the Southwest Quarter of Section 17, and the Northwest Quarter of the Northwest Quarter of Section 20, Township 76 North, Range 13 West of the 5th P.M. and that the subdivision and platting was made at their request and with their free consent.

This plat is set out on the next page hereof (page 4)

Plat in Plat Book 2, page 62

Ben R. Thomas and                                                                                            Warranty Deed
Nadja H. Thomas, husband and wife,                                                              $1.00 and Other Valuable Consideration
                                                                                                                               Dated Sept. 27, 1922
to                                                                                                                            Recorded Oct. 3, 1922
                                                                                                                                Deed Record 55, page 421
O.A. Dugger and
J. A. Griggs, as Trustees of
     Rice Cemetery Association and their
     successors in office

Description: Commencing at the Northwest Corner of Section 20, Township 76 North, Range 13 West of the 5th P.M., thence running East 57 rods to Rice Cemetery, thence South 1 rod, thence West 57 rods, thence North 1 rod to place of beginning and containing 57/160 of an acre.

+ + +

Frank S. Thomas and wife,                                                                                 Easement
Margaret J. Thomas                                                                                            Consideration $1.00
                                                                                                                               Dated June 8, 1966
to                                                                                                                            Filed June 8, 1966
                                                                                                                               Deed Record 83, page 561
Keokuk County, Iowa, for road
     purposes and for use as a
     public highway

Description: The South 33 feet in equal width of the West 870 feet of the Southwest Quarter of Section 17, Township 76 North, Range 13 West of the 5th P.M., said parcel contains 0.63 acres more or less.

+ + +

Hazel Mildred Thomas and husband,                                                                     Easement
Dave S. Thomas, and                                                                                                 Consideration $1.00
Ray D. Thomas and                                                                                                   Dated June 8, 1966
Loretta Thomas, contract purchasers,                                                                     Recorded June 8, 1966
                                                                                                                                      Deed Record 83, page 563

Keokuk County, Iowa, for road
     purposes and for use as a
     public highway

Description: The North 33 feet in equal width of the West 870 feet of the Northwest Quarter of the Northwest Quarter of Section 29, Township 76 North, Range 13 West of the 5th P.M., said parcel contains 0.63 acres more or less.


It has been difficult to ascertain the exact size of the Rice Cemetery. According to deeds as set out herein, there is an area of 1/4 acre for cemetery in Section 17, and 1/2 acre for cemetery just below the section line in Section 20, making a total of 3/4 acre. Roadways were first deeded and later through easements, the road was widened to meet requirements for county maintenance. These deed measurements do not quite agree with those for the cemetery in the plat in Plat Book 2, at page 62, which shows Lots "2" and 3 on either side of the cemetery area. The cemetery seems to have been extended on the east and west from the area covered by the deeds.

Most deeds for adjoining real estate describe the cemetery exception in the deeds as being 4 rods north and south by 10 rods east and west in section 17 (40 sq. rds., 1/4 a.) and 8 rods north and south by 10 rods east and west in Section 20 (80 sq. rds., 1/2 a.). This corresponds with the cemetery size in the original deeds.

The cemetery was measured (1974) for the lister by Dave Thomas and the area size was given as 95 feet by 200 feet in Section 17, and 130 feet by 200 feet in Section 20, or a total cemetery size of 225 feet by 200 feet. This measurement given to the lister is reasonably accurate, as Dave Thomas with the assistance of another person carefully measured the existing burial ground. No doubt some additional ground from adjacent real estate was added to the cemetery when new fences were built around the cemetery in earlier years, but is not reflected in deeds. Time did not permit a more exhaustive search of the county recorder's office records, but in the search which was made, no record could be found of the purchase or gift of the additional ground.


No special history of Rice Cemetery was obtainable. Though Jason Rice gave the first ground for the cemetery and it is known as the Rice Cemetery, it is also frequently referred to as the Thomas Cemetery. Thomas families who have lived in the vicinity for several generations have made a significant contribution to and taken a great interest in this beautiful cemetery.


The information that was received is that there is no plat.


Because no plat was available to follow, the headstones in Rice Cemetery were read by rows from north to south, beginning at the east side. V in the margin before a name designates a veteran. M in the margin before a name designates that there is no stone, but a funeral home metal marker indicates a burial plot. No attempt was made to estimate the number of vacant spaces in the rows between the headstones read. Those spaces may represent unused burial plots or burials without headstones.

Row 1 (only two stones at the south end)
Trixy A. Dugger, b. Apr. 6, 1893; d. Apr. 6, 1893
Lydia E. Dugger b. Dec. 18, 1908; d. Jan. 13, 1909


Row 2
Alfred W. King, June 13, 1861 (only date)
William E. Colbert, 1830-1900
Louisa J. Colbert, 1839 – (no death date)
Francis G. Kendall, b. May 11, 1811; d. Dec. 16, 1896
S. Addie, dau. of F. G. and J. E. Kendall, d. Mar. 6, 1862; age 18 yrs. 5 mos. 26 das.
     (stone lying down)
Emma A., dau. of F. G. and J. E. Kendall, d. Mar. 8, 1871; age 27 yrs. 4 mos.
Infant son of F. E. and R. B. Colbert, d. May 21, 1894
Lloyd H., son Gertie and Brose Dugger, 1900-1940
Brose Dugger, 1874-1931
Gertie Dugger, 1876-1960
Fidelia Himrod, 1843-1924
Robert N. Waddell, b. Oct. 30, 1815; d. Jan. 29, 1892
Lydia Sigafoos Waddell, b. Feb. 20, 1822; d. May 15, 1905 (Wife of Robert)
Twin sisters, b. Dec. 17, 1856; d. Jan. 1, 1857 (no last name; likely Waddell)
Infant son (no last name), June 18, 1859 (only date)
Mattie E. Sigafoos, b. Apr. 14, 1835; d. July 22, 1901


Row 3
Jerry G. Keep, 1882-1965
Guy M. Sparks, b. Sept. 19, 1882; d. July 7, 1890
Arminta Sparks, b. Jan. 21, 1859; d. May 4, 1934
Isaac G. Sparks, b. Dec. 4, 1856; d. Jan. 17, 1928
James N. Dugger, b. Jan. 21, 1834; d. Mar. 8, 1917
Elizabeth A. Dugger, his wife, b. May 2, 1841; d. Jan. 5, 1913
Wells B., son of H. B. and M. A. Fuller, d. Nov. 5, 1859; age 5 yrs. 3 mos. 26 das.
Mary Louisa, dau. of H. B. and M. A. Fuller, d. Nov. 5, 1859; age 5 yrs. 3 mos. 26 das.
Lottie M. L. Genevay, dau. Of A. and S. Genevay, d. Mar. 9, 1875; age 5 yrs. 10 mos. 15 das.
Elizabeth M., dau. of A. and S. Genevay, d. Aug. 19, 1860; age 1 yr. 8 mos. (?)
Gertrude Dugger, 1873-1922
Rex Dugger, 1885-1919
Hard Dugger, b. in McCoupin Co., Ill., Aug. 25, 1849; d. Apr. 6, 1923
Edna Cora Waddell, wife of Hard Dugger, b. in Republic, Seneca Co., Ohio, Sept. 13, 1854; d. Oct. 14, 1894 Berthard, dau. of H. and E. C. Dugger, d. Jan. 15, 1881; age 1 mo. 13 das.
Charlie Ross, on of G. K. and L. I. Herendeen (no dates readable)
K. T., dau. of G. K. and A. L. Herendeen, d. Sept. 9, 1874
(No first name), son of R. J. and Hattie, 1910 (only date)
Elizabeth Herendeen, wife of Joseph Herendeen, d. Nov. 22, 1892; age 74 yrs. 6 das.


Row 4
Nina, dau. of M. C. and M. E. Dugger, d. Sept. 25, 1899; age 5 yrs. 2 mos. 18 das.
J. D. Tipton, b. Sept. 25, 1836; d. Jan. 22, 1904
Lucy C., wife of J. D. Tipton, b. Apr. 29, 1846; d. July 31, 1912
William S. Dugger, d. Apr. 9, 1888; age 77 yrs. 7 das.
Elizabeth John, wife of W. S. Dugger, d. Aug. 2, 1886; age 72 yrs. 7 mos. 28 das. (stone lying down)
Hiram, son of S. A. Dugger, d. Mar. 21, 1863; age 2 mos. 6 das.
Sada E., dau. of J. M. and E. A. Dugger, d. Jan. 28, 1863; age 9 mos. 24 das. (stone against tree)
(First name not readable), dau. of J. N. and C. Dugger, d. Aug. 12, 1853; age 1 mo. 15 das.
Charity, wife of James N. Dugger, d. Apr. 4, 1853; age 20 yrs. 6 mos. 28 das.
William H. Dugger, son of J. N. and G. Dugger, d. Aug. 17, 1853; age 4 mos. 15 das.
(Not readable) Albert (not readable) A. (not readable) and L. C. Genevay (remainder not readable) Georgie, son of A. F. and L. C. Genevay, d. Apr. 29, 1873; age 4 mos. 13 das.
Sarah, wife of Henry Swire, d. Sept. 30, 1859; age 26 yrs. (stone lying down)
Thomas H., son of H. and S. Swire, d. Oct. (remainder not readable; stone lying down)
Thomas, son of E. and S. Genevay, died suddenly, age 32 yrs. (stone broken at date line. Stone lying down)
John P. Genevay, d. Sept. 22, 1866; age 62 yrs.
Sarah, wife of L. P. Genevay, (stone broken, remainder unreadable)
Fredrick, son of L. P. and S. Genevay, d. Mar. 1, 1862; (stone broken and lying down; remainder not      readable)
George M. Staples, only son of Dr. J. W. and M. E. Morgan, d. Dec. 28, 1864; age 1 yr. 2 mos. 18 das.
Elizabeth, wife of James Dobbs, d. Nov. 29, 1892; age 60 yrs. 4 mos. 7 das.
Claire Boomershine, 1881-1956
Lillie Boomershine, 1885-1929


Row 5

   V     Honor Cleland, 1872-1960
Marvel Cleland, 1903-1906
William C. son of F. M. and H. K. Cleland, d. Jan. 1, 1894; age 18 das.
David S. Grill, d. Sept. 6, 1882; age 67 yrs. 6 mos. 22 das.
Mary Jane, wife of David Grill, d. Sept. 1, 1852; age 30 yrs.
Martin Walter Grill, b. Apr. 4, 1818; d. July 1, 1851
Sarah, wife of M. Walter Grill, b. Apr. 24, 1824; d. June 15, 1887
Cathrine, dau. of S. and M. Walter Grill (no data given)
     (Stone broken off, no identification)
Mary Ann, wife of Isaac G. Wilson, b. Aug. 15, 1895; d. Sept. 12, 1882; age 77 yrs. 27 das. (stone lying down)
Isaac K. Wilson, d. July 1, 1869; age 30 yrs. 1 mo. 17 das. (stone lying down)
Lillie L. Dobbs, b. Dec. 24, 1872; d. Dec. 23, 1887
Arthur J. McMullen, b. May 25, 1864; d. Sept. 19, 1882
Louisa M., dau. of D. S. and G. D. McMullen, d. Feb. 10, 1888; age 9 mos. 11 das.
Benj. Frank McMullen, b. Nov. 15, 1873; d. Nov. 13, 1895
B. F. McMullen, b. Feb. 14, 1830; (no death date given)
Harriet L., wife of B. F. McMullen, b. Apr. 20, 1836; d. Dec. 22, 1906


Row 6
Harvey H., son of Jason and Julia Rice, d. Jan. 31, 1951; age 20 yrs. 5 mos.

   V     John L. Sampson (Co. and infantry information not readable) d. Jan. 15, 1861; age 26 yrs. 8 mos. 11 das.
John C., son of (first name or names not readable) Sampson; (remainder not readable)
William H. Brokaw, d. Dec. 29, 1882; age 1 yr. 11 mos. 16 das.
Charles H. Brokaw, d. Sept. 23, 1880; age 7 yrs. 9 mos. 23 das.
          (William and Charles are children of W. H. and E. A. Brokaw)

   V     William H. Brokaw, b. Mar. 28, 1840; d. Apr. 18, 1904
Emily A. Brokaw, b. June 12, 1846; d. Mar. 15, 1941
Moses M. Brokaw, d. Apr. 14, 1898; age 86 yrs. 8 mos. 20 das.
Rachel S. Brokaw, d. May 21, 1889; age 74 yrs. 10 mos. 13 das.


Row 7

   V     Ardis M. Tucker, 1905-1938
George N. Dunbar, b. Dec. 20, 1875; d. Mar. 29, 1908
Elcy, dau. of I. G. and M. A. Wilson, d. Nov. 17, 1866; age 26 yrs. 2 mos. 11 das.
Rebecca, dau. of J. A. Linnville, d. Aug. 16, 1865; age 23 yrs. 1 mo. 21 das. (stone lying down)
John P. Wilson, d. Nov. 26, 1861; age 34 yrs. 11 mos. 6 das. M. E., dau. of L. and H. Gergory, d. Oct. 23, 1862;          age 11 yrs. 9 mos.

   V     Marion F. Dunbar, d. Feb. 17, 1898; age 61 yrs. 11 mos. 25 das.
Julie F. Dunbar, his wife, (no dates given)
Inez May, dau. of J. D. and A. A. Keep, d. Aug. 13, 1866; age 10 mos. 6 das.

   V     John O. Keep, b. Aug. 9, 1840; d. Dec. 5, 1915; Co. H. 20th Ill. Inf.


Row 8
Mary B., dau. of W. C. and M. A. Crill, d. Aug. 31, 1868; age (not readable)
     (stone broken and lying down)
(Stones around tree: Lamson C. Williams, d. Sept. 25, 1866; age 37 yrs. 11 mos. 17 das. Hannah W., wife of      (broken, not readable) d. Aug. 11, 1860; age 29 yrs. 1 mo.)

   V     S. A. Linville, Co. H. 3 Ia. Inf. (no dates)
Lillie (not readable), dau. of L. and L. Dunbar, d. Oct. 5, 1862; age 9 mos. 13 das.
Ulycis J., son of S. K. and D. M. Wilson, d. Dec. 8, 1865; age 11 mos. 20 das.
Infant (no identification or dates)
Josiah, husband of Susannah Dunbar, d. June 26, 1871; age 74 yrs. 9 mos. 26 das.
Joey Bedford, d. Feb. 26, 1875; age 3 yrs. 8 das.
Annie Bedford, d. Feb. 23, 1875; age 7 yrs. 15 das.
      (Joe and Annie are children of R. W. and C. A. Bedford)
Ann, wife of R. W. Bedford, d. Mar. 19, 1874; age 3 yrs. 9 mos.
Edmund Bedford, d. Oct. 21, 1866; age 12 das.
     (Georgie and Edmund are children of R. W. and A. Bedford)
Johanna Fitzgerald McKean, 1841-1885
J. Roy Dugger, 1878-1963
Sylvia E. Dugger, 1879-1926
Lena, dau. of R. and S. Dugger, 1911-1912
Arthur, son of J. R. and S. E. Dugger, b. Dec. 5, 1900; d. June 3, 1901


Row 9
Yvonne Fender Smith, mother of Mary Thomas, 1903-1969
Cyrus W. Jordan, b. Sept. 2, 1852; d. May 28, 1924
Rose E. Collard Jordan, his wife, b. Mar. 24, 1862; d. May 12, 1920

   V      James W.* Jordan, 1879-1903; Co. F. 51st, Iowa, Spanish-American War, Vol. Enlisted June 5, 1898;      discharged Nov. 2, 1899
Jane, wife of John Collard, b. Jan. 4, 1837; d. Apr. 7, 1898
John, husband of Jane Collard, d. June 19, 1871; age 59 yrs. 2 mos. 15 das.
Elizabeth A., dau. of J. and J. Collard, d. July 29, 1872; age 6 yrs. 11 mos. 7 das.
Edwin J., son of J. and S. Collard, d. June 17, 1868; age 19 yrs.
Elizabeth Lippitt, wife of Joseph Andrews, d. June 29, 1864; age 38 yrs. 1 mo. 4 das.
Charles Joseph, son of Joseph and Elizabeth Andrews, d. Jan. 5, 1862; age 3 yrs. 10 mos.
George Lippitt, son of Joseph and Eliz. L. Andrews, d. Aug. 12, 1862; age 1 yr. 9 mos. 26 das.
Infants of S. E. and C. E. Reed, b. Mar. 29, 1910; d. Aug. 29, 1912:
     S. Eddie Reed, 1881-1950
     Gracie E., 1882-1954


*W. is abbreviation of Willis


Row 10
B. A. Snodgrass, b. June 29, 1823; d. Oct. 18, 1909
Rizpah, wife of B. A. Snodgrass, b. May 14, 1829; d. Jan. 30, 1907
Sarah Long, d. Jan. 12, 1902; age 93 yrs. 10 mos. 12 das.
Leven Casey, d. June 23, 1865; age 81 yrs. 13 das. (stone lying down)
Elizabeth, wife of L. Casey, d. Aug. 21, 1866; age 71 yrs. 3 mos. 16 das.
Charles H. Smith, d. Oct. 24, 1881; age 24 yrs. 5 mos.
(Base; no stone)
(Tree broken off by storm and lying on stones)
W. A. Pinckney, 1841-1910
Angeline Pinckney, his wife, 1845-1928


Row 11
Elsie J. Greenlee, b. Nov. 7, 1885; d. Oct. 4, 1966
Sarah Viola, wife of G. C. Greenlee, b. Oct. 2, 1855; d. Mar. 12, 1897
     (Mother of Iva, Altha, and Elsie)
Ella, wife of J. W. Waddell, d. Feb. 12, 1868; age 17 yrs. 3 mos.
Infant Waddell, age 1 mo. 15 das.
Nancy H., wife of H. C. Porter, d. June 11, 1874; age 66 yrs. 10 mos. 10 das.
Mary E. Downing, b. Aug. 30, 1854; d. Dec. 5, 1895

   V     George W. Downing, b. Aug. 27, 1847; d. Dec. 9, 1891
Infant (relationship not readable) of R. and S. M. Alexander, d. Mar. 22, 1871
(Base, no top stone)
(stone not readable)
Mary A., wife of W. P. Thomas, b. Oct. 22, 1872; age 17 yrs. 4 mos. 6 das.
Ellen Moore Hayes (no dates)
Emily J., wife of W. W. Thomas, d. Feb. 20, 1880; age 39 yrs. 19 mos. (days not readable)
William Wesley Thomas, d. Oct. 16, 1896; age 72 yrs. 1 mo. 12 das.
Malinda, wife of Ralph Jinkins, d. Dec. 22, 1896; age 74 yrs. 5 mos. 11 das.
Ralph Jinkins, b. Mar. 11, 1822, married to Malinda Thommas, Jan. 11, 1843; d. July 22, 1891; age 69 yrs. 4      mos. 11 das.
Hily, wife of John Baker, d. Dec. 28, 1868; age 64 yrs. 8 mos. 29 das.
(Stone base; no top stone)
(Base; no top stone)

   V      James Smothers, 1827-1909
Manervy Smothers, 1827-1905


Row 12
Montanae, dau. of M. T. and M. P. Manary, d. Nov. 16, 1882; age 6 yrs. 1 mo. 29 das.
M. T. Manary, b. Oct. 3, 1847; d. Apr. 28, 1896
Orlan T. Manary, 1889-1916
Mary E. Thomas, 1856-1946
W. P. "Doc" Thomas, 1852-1943
Josie Thomas, d. Dec. 22, 1902; age 5 yrs. 1 mo. 23 das.
Dr. D. D. Lawrence, b. July 5, 1844; d. June 30, 1905
Elizabeth Lawrence, his wife, b. Oct. 29, 1847; d. Sept. 24, 1892
George Boomershine (Father), 1876-1947
Hiram Boomershine, 1851-1929
Anna Boomershine, 1850-1931


Row 13
(Marker; not readable)
Mary Jane Blacketer (Mother), 1853-1928
Jenny M., dau. of John and Jane Blacketer, d. Aug. 24, 1894; age 2 yrs. 1 mo. 12 das.
Bird B. Blacketer, b. July 10, 1889; d. July 17, 1907
Daires O. Griggs, 1874-1930
Nettie M. Griggs, his wife, b. 1878 d. 1973
Ethel Thomas, b. Feb. 3, 1903; (no other date)
Matthew Thomas, b. Mar. 27, 1904; (no other date)
Nettie Thomas, 1894-1957
J. Ed Thomas, 1895-1973
Benjamin D. Thomas (Father), 1866-1928
Marietta Thomas (Mother), his wife, 1864-1949
Emmet J., son of J. A. and A. F. Griggs, b. May 16, 1889; d. Dec. 28, 1903
Maine A., son of J. A. and A. F. Griggs, d. Jan. 2, 1899; age 1 yr. 7 mos. 7 das.

   V      J. M. Hampton, Co. D 19th Ind. Inf. (no dates)
Mary F. Hampton, his wife, d. Mar. 6, 1882; age 29 yrs. 8 mos. 23 das.
Minie, dau. of J. S. and M. Griggs, d. July 4, 1881; age 3 yrs. 19 das.
Williw, son of M. and M. Persing, d. Aug. 10, 1871; age 6 mos. 7 das.


Row 14
Narcissus Elliott, b. Mar. 9, 1846; d. Feb. 19, 1943

   V     Wm. Elliott, b. May 1, 1843; d. Dec. 24, 1920; Co. A 27th Ind. Inf.
Susan Hampton (Mother), b. Feb. 2, 1816; d. Mar. 12, 1898
Nancy L. Griggs, b. Aug. 11, 1810; d. Sept. 12, 1895

   V      Jas. S. Griggs, 1st Sgt. Co. C. 51 Ind. Inf. (no dates)
Malissa Griggs (Mother), 1834-1928


Additional Information

Mrs. Jim (Elma) Nanke reports that a small baby girl, Leah Tucker, who died the day she was born, date not known, is buried in the Rice Cemetery. Her parents, Bert and Rosene Tucker, are both deceased. Rosene is the sister of Jim Nanke.

Transcribed by Diane Muir. Thanks so much, Diane!

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