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Junior explains that his father and his mother, Agnes Adams, were both raised on the reservation, and even though they once had aspirations, they have fallen into the same cycle of poverty as many of their peers. Junior claims that this is why his parents are now alcoholics. Junior’s mother is a smart woman who once wanted to go to college. She reads a lot and has a tremendous memory. Junior’s father is a talented singer who once dreamed of becoming a jazz musician. However, they did not have any support or help to leave the reservation and therefore, they have abandoned these childhood ambitions. Mary is Junior’s older sister whom he nicknames "Mary Runs Away". A promising student and aspiring writer, Mary retreated into her parents’ basement after graduating from high school. However, once she sees Junior pursuing his dreams by going to Reardan, she marries a professional gambler shortly after meeting him and moves to a reservation in Montana. Mary professes to be happy with her new life, which is sadly cut short after a fire consumes the trailer in which she and her husband are living.