No one seems to remember what the boy’s real name was. But his cousin, Lily Atong, remembers him well. When she talks about him, she gets a distant, wistful look in her eyes.
They grew up together, here in this village in northern Uganda. The boy was chubby, she says with a smile.
He would wake up early in the morning, clean and go tend the garden. He made her delicious, roasted sweet potatoes. And he was funny too — he’d tell stories that made everyone double over in laughter.
There wasn’t much to laugh about back then.