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Summary When Sergeant McShane calls on Katie in his civilian clothes, Francie thinks he is quite impressive. She feels comfortable watching him with her mother and Laurie, but it bothers her a bit to see him sitting in Johnny's place. Francie is not, however, really surprised when McShane proposes to Katie, and she accepts.
Since Francie is the eldest, McShane asks her permission to marry her mother, and she consents. McShane then tells Katie he would like to legally adopt Laurie as his daughter, especially since she has never seen her biological father. Katie thinks it is a good idea.
When they are alone, Francie and Neeley talk about the upcoming marriage. They are happy that Laurie will not face the difficulties that they faced in childhood; but they are certain that she will never have as much fun as they did.
When McShane proposes to Katie, she accepts. She also agrees to let McShane legally adopt Laurie. Francie also gives her consent when McShane is kind enough to ask her for permission to become her stepfather. Francie and Neeley are happy for their mother and feel that life will now be easier for Katie and Laurie. Amazingly, they both feel that Laurie's childhood will be less fun than their own. Fortunately, they remember the good times, rather than the bad ones.