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Children of Fallen Troops Turn to Each Other

Mentor Chris Matthews, of Fort Meade, Md. , left, works with eight-year-old Carson Givens of Fountain, Colo. , during "Good Grief Camp" in Arlington, Va. , Friday, May 27, 2011, where nearly 500 children of fallen military members take part in activities with volunteer mentors on coping with grief and loss.

Mentor Chris Matthews, of Fort Meade, Md. , left, works with eight-year-old Carson Givens of Fountain, Colo. , during "Good Grief Camp" in Arlington, Va. , Friday, May 27, 2011, where nearly 500 children of fallen military members take part in activities with volunteer mentors on coping with grief and loss.

ARLINGTON, Va. -- More than 4,300 children have lost a parent in the Iraq or Afghanistan wars. Many of these kids say it's difficult in part because they live in an area where no one else they know has lost someone in the recent wars.

Several hundred of them have gathered for Memorial Day weekend in the Washington region to share stories and offer each other support. They are attending the "good grief" camp organized by the nonprofit Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors. At the camp, they are encouraged to talk about their parent who died, but also to have fun.

Even though the experience has been difficult, many say they are now more compassionate.

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