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Byline: Michelle Bearden
Jun. 12--LITHIA -- Heather Duckworth is thinking pink. Yes, that's the perfect nursery color for baby Allie Patricia, coming from Guatemala to join the family in the next few months.
Heather's not used to pink rooms. She's the mother of four boys. She has to catch herself when she says that. Three are with her; one's in heaven.
"Jacob would have liked the idea of a little sister," she says wistfully. "We talked about adoption even before he got sick. If we could have a house full of children, we would."
A year ago today, Heather and her husband, Don, were in such a different place, far from talk of diapers and babyproofing their home in FishHawk Ranch.
They were keeping a bedside vigil at St. Joseph's Hospital, where their 6-year-old son -- the middle triplet -- was slipping away. He died at 12:30 a.m., succumbing to adrenocortical carcinoma, a brutal cancer that had plagued him since February 2004.
Some parents never get past the grief of losing a child. Such devastation breaks up marriages and destroys spirits. The Duckworths, both 35, say they're not immune to moments of despair. But their steady faith in God and determination to keep Jacob's memory alive in positive ways have helped them cope.
The towheaded boy with aquamarine eyes smiles from framed photos throughout …