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    In August 2003, Ben Weber and his sister, Meagan, lost their father, Norm Jr., who died of a heart attack. Nearly seven years later, in March 2010, the brother and sister lost their mother, Lynne, who died after a series of strokes caused by moyamoya disease, a rare condition that constricts arteries in the brain. The two decided then that the natural thing to do was for Meagan, just six years older than Ben, to become BenÕs legal guardian. From there, a special relationship between the two developed in which Meagan was both the sister and mother figure in BenÕs life. She stood by his side during senior night, Sept. 28, 2012, at which parents joined their senior sons on Raider Field in Huntingburg before the start of their final home game in a Southridge football uniform. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    During BenÕs senior year at Southridge High School, he played three sports: football, basketball and baseball. Each senior night served as a dual reminder that another sport was coming to an end and that his parents were not there to witness it. Meagan comforted her emotional brother as he was introduced on senior night for football. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Both of BenÕs parents, Norm Jr. and Lynne, are buried in the cemetery behind the church they attended, Zoar United Methodist Church. Ben still attends the church and tries to visit their grave, or at least drive through the cemetery, each Sunday after he attends services. He visited the grave site May 12. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    A photograph of Lynne Weber-Messmer and her two children, Ben and Meagan, sits on the dresser in BenÕs bedroom at his home. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Faith has played a major roll in BenÕs life. He said just knowing there is a greater power has been incredibly helpful as he has coped with the death of his parents. Ben prayed before the start of a football game at Raider Field on Aug. 17, 2012. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Both of BenÕs parents, Norm Jr. and Lynne, attended Zoar United Methodist Church. Since their deaths, Ben has continued to attend services there, as he did May 12. He chooses to sit in the same pew where his parents sat and often declines requests from other church members for him to sit with them. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Ben Weber, left, and his teammate Cody Thompson took turns shooting free throws in an empty Memorial Gym in Huntingburg a couple hours before tip-off of the Class 2A boys basketball sectional against Perry Central on March 1. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Then a senior at Southridge, Ben joined his fellow students in sharing their displeasure for an officialÕs call during the Feb. 6 girls basketball sectional game between the Raiders and North Posey at Buechler Arena in Ferdinand. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    After finishing dinner with his sister, Meagan, and her husband, Justin Bayer, Ben worked on filling out a scholarship application before paying some bills April 15. Ben earned enough scholarship money to pay for his tuition his freshman year at Indiana State University where he is studying financial services and certified financial planning. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Before his freshman year of high school, Ben didnÕt know the first thing about getting stains out of his clothing. But since his mother died, he has had to learn that as well as take on several other household responsibilities. Ben slung his comforter fresh from the dryer over his shoulder as he transferred more clothes into the dryer at his home July 22. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Justin King, then a sophomore, left, looked over BenÕs shoulder as he thumbed through his Bible looking for some passages to read to classmates at the Fellowship of Christian Athletes meeting the morning of May 9 at Southridge High School. Ben was president of the schoolÕs FCA chapter during his senior year. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Throughout his high school career at Southridge High School, Ben received numerous recognitions for both his athletic and academic successes. ÒItÕs not that I donÕt like receiving stuff, but itÕs hard. ItÕs pressure,Ó he said. Ben walked off the stage in the school auditorium after receiving recognition during the senior awards ceremony May 15. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Meagan chuckled at her brother as he struggled with his belt while she helped him in their Huntingburg home to get ready for commencement May 17. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    After Ben spent more than a half-hour posing for pictures with various friends, family members and classmates, Meagan asked him to pose for one final picture before leaving Memorial Gym in Huntingburg on May 17. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald

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    Ben took a stack of his clothes from his brother-in-law, Justin Bayer, as Justin and Meagan helped Ben move into his dorm room at Indiana State University in Terre Haute on Aug. 17. Dave Weatherwax/The Herald