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Posted: 11/18/2003 1:33:14 AM EDT
Wife was recently put on medication for mild depression. She has never had an urge to hurt herself or anyone else, but I'm concerned about having firearms in the house, from both a practical and legal standpoint. All I've got right now are two Homak gun cabinets with key locks.

Getting them out of the house isn't really an option, because we don't have any friends or relatives close by--no one I'd trust enough to keep them, anyway.

I'm thinking about taking bolts & slides (haven't figured out what to do about revolvers yet) and putting them in a small, separate safe only I have the combo to.

Any suggestions on a practical way to keep my wife and family safe? And what's my legal requirements? And how do I balance my need for concealed carry with my wife's safety? Would appreciate some help from the expertise here on the board!
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 1:44:11 AM EDT
If you have the only keys to the Homak's you should be good to go.

If you keep one beside the bed, get a Gun Vault or something like it. Program your own code, don't tell the wife what it is. Make sure only you know where the backup key is (maybe put them in the Homak's).

Keep your CCW in a IWB holster and your shirt tucked. That would preclude anyone grabbing it without you being able to stop it.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 1:45:00 AM EDT
does mild depression make people viloent??

my suggestion would get a decent safe. i remember sam's was selling a 700. safe and its a good one. put it in the garage if you have one.

personally, i wouldnt suggest selling them. i gave my brother my bushmaster when he graduated state police academy and i still regret letting that one go! you miss them once their gone.

what do you mean by legal requirements?
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 2:01:40 AM EDT
Depression in general doesn't make people violent, but it can lead to suicidal tendencies; that's why I'm worried.

Triumph, I've got no plans to sell--learned that lesson long ago! At worst, my brother lives just outside of Allentown PA, but getting them to him is difficult--3-hr drive, across Maryland; rather not do that. Plus, both he and I are in the military, subject to move fairly frequently; that option would only be open for a year at most.

I'm concerned that there might be legal ramifications of having firearms in a house where someone is under treatment for a mental disorder. For example, I know if I have been committed to a mental institution, owning guns is out; but what about my wife under treatment (not commitment)?
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 2:29:57 AM EDT
I wouldn't worry too much....unless you plan on hiding rope, knives, sleeping pills, drain cleaner and boring holes in the garage door to ventilate the fumes.

If someone is determined to hurt themselves, they won't need a gun.

Be there for your wife, keep yourself even and steady and she will get through it. I speak from painful personal experience.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 2:37:42 AM EDT
Trigger locks are cheap.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 3:11:43 AM EDT
Don't get so worked up about it. In absolute all honesty the drugs they put her on are far more dangerous than the guns in the house. Her problem is going to be aggrivated by the shorter days & less sunlight. So I will give you some advice, get her out of the house regularly, the change of scenery will be theraputic. Even if you just go to McDonalds for a drive & a Coke after work. Bust up the mundane routine that she has gotten used to. Have a few "us" nights during the week, no TV, no computer, no ARFCOM. Help her clean house, be attentive, do something quirky or goofy once in a while. Get out on the weekends, bring home dinner as a surprise one night, take her to the range, a museum, an art show, the zoo, visit friend etc. Check the events in the paper to see whats going on & spread things out. You don't want to do something major everyday, just break up the routine and have something different to look forward to.

The SSRI's that they prescribe today are not good for you. Many have awful withdrawl symtoms especially Paxil. Depression isn't a pleasant ailment but mild bouts can be treated other ways than with drugs. Be sure your diet is balanced. Severe cases, like bi-polar disorder may take years to find the right drug combination, I have a dear friend of mine who is bi-polar and it crushes me to see her suffer but they finally balanced her meds and she is doing well.
One other note, folks who suffer from depression and cover up their suffering pretty well. You're wise to be aware and take precautions but I would hope that the bond between you & your wife is strong enought such that she would come to to help cope instead of taking some other action.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 6:58:07 AM EDT
Well damn, I have severe depression. Guess I'm just a big mac attack waiting to happen, huh? Sheesh. All them kiddy murderin bitches in TX and SC killed their kids b/c they C R A Z Y. Depression doesn't equal crazy. Drowning your kids equals crazy. Untreated it can make you do stupid shit, but that stupid thaere has to be a lot more than just depression wrong.
Relax. Is she taking an anti anxiety related med like Paxil? Or an SSRI like Welbutrin or Lexapro/Celexa? In addition to the meds she needs daily exercise to get her seratonin levels kicking.
SSRI=Seratonin Re-uptake Inhibitor. The more Seratonin she has coursing around up there the better. More Turkey, L-triptophan causes seratonin production too. You will be fine as long as you keep the keys to the safe with you at all times. That is more for your peace of mind than anything else. If you all of the sudden start acting like she's a freak and a menace you will just make her feel horrible and really cause a lot of damage. She needs to know she's not alone in this, but she also needs to know she's not a pathetic invalid. You might be treadin on eggshells for a while. She has an emotional version of tuberculosis. It is cureable, rather easily, but you have to follow the therapy to the letter. Everybody and their cousin has a home remedy for it, yours truly included, but if left untreated it can kill you, or spread to others. I'm not shitting you, I've seen depression spread like an infectious disease through a household of unrelated people. Depression CAN cause violent outbursts, but they are instantanious rages not they gona go get something and do something type. That's already too much planning involved. It's usually just MAD+GRRRR+RAGE=PUNCH. Most violent drunks actually have depression. Alcohol being a depressent, add that to depression chemistry in the brain already and you get
UBER DEPRESSION. She should stop drinking completely if she drank at all. Not only will it cancel out the effects of the meds it will make things worse than before. She may have to try more than one med to find something that is more suited to her individual chemistry hiccup.
Don't hide the key around the house. We men can't hide porn from them, so we probably can't hide anythig else either. If you can afford a better safe with a combination by allmeans get one, but don't let your wife's illness be the sole reason for the upgrade. Do it for the firearms, uh, I mean the children.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 7:07:41 AM EDT
Well since we are on the topic of depression, stay away from Paxil, that shit is evil. Ask your doc about Remeron, it has no withdrawl symptoms, little side effects and it can put your depression into remission.

Regading the thereputic effects of turkey, there is a supplement called 5-HTP. Do a google search on it. It is an amino acid that increases the seratonin in the brain. It is very inexpensive & effective unlike St. Johns Wort that is over priced and of little value.

5-HTP Data:

"5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is an amino acid that occurs naturally in the body and is the final step in the production of the neurotransmitter serotonin, an important chemical that's responsible for many of the brain impulses involving satisfaction and well being. 5-HTP is created through the hydroxylating of Tryptophan. Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that must be taken in through protein containing foods since the body can not synthesize it."
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 7:08:56 AM EDT

i remember sam's was selling a 700.


bought one yesterday to meet BATFE gun storage guidelines. winchester safe, dark green with gold trim, $758 tax title and license, 625 lbs, 11/22 guns, 30x24x60, 30 minutes at 1200 degrees, all carpeted interior, very nice
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 7:12:11 AM EDT

Originally Posted By limaxray:
Depression in general doesn't make people violent, but it can lead to suicidal tendencies; that's why I'm worried.

snip



Your fretting about essentially nothing...Ten of millions of folks suffer from mild depression without ever thinking of suicide.

A way you might consider in to remove the firing pins and get a Gun Vault as mentioned for your "Bedside Companion" and keep the firing pins in there. Once the meds work, which can take 2+ weeks she'll be fine.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 7:19:40 AM EDT

Originally Posted By W-W:

Originally Posted By limaxray:
Depression in general doesn't make people violent, but it can lead to suicidal tendencies; that's why I'm worried.

snip



Your fretting about essentially nothing...Ten of millions of folks suffer from mild depression without ever thinking of suicide.

(snip)



The mentally ill are no more violent to themselves or others than anybody else in the general population. If you are worried about having guns in the house, then you should be worried about having guns in the house at any time, irrespective of somebody's mental or physical ailments.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 7:28:10 AM EDT
Im pretty much depressed, I wont go to a doctor though. The only person who is in danger from my guns is someone trying to invade my home.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:14:32 AM EDT
If you seriously think she's a threat to herself or others, I would disable whatever isn't under your immediate control.. ie: pull a slide or firing pin or whatever, then lock 'em in a separate container that only you have access to. There is nobody on the internet that can tell you what your wife is thinking, nor anyone who can predict the future. Most likely you'd just be overcautious, but it damn sure beats the worst case alternative.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:16:06 AM EDT

Originally Posted By limaxray:
Wife was recently put on medication for mild depression. She has never had an urge to hurt herself or anyone else, but I'm concerned about having firearms in the house, from both a practical and legal standpoint. All I've got right now are two Homak gun cabinets with key locks.

Getting them out of the house isn't really an option, because we don't have any friends or relatives close by--no one I'd trust enough to keep them, anyway.

I'm thinking about taking bolts & slides (haven't figured out what to do about revolvers yet) and putting them in a small, separate safe only I have the combo to.

Any suggestions on a practical way to keep my wife and family safe? And what's my legal requirements? And how do I balance my need for concealed carry with my wife's safety? Would appreciate some help from the expertise here on the board!



According to my Doc I suffer from what would be more than mild clinical depression. There are a crap load of guns in my house and only I have the key to them. Just because a person suffers from depression, be it mild or worse. It is not a reason to fear that they may try to kill themselves. Some people realise that no matter how bad life gets, it's never bad enough that taking your own life is an option. Has she ever at all in the past given any type of indication that she maybe suicidal? has she done anything recently to lead you to believe that it's somthing she could do?

Depression in general doesn't make people violent, but it can lead to suicidal tendencies; that's why I'm worried
You won't see to many people with "mild" depression having suicidal tendencies. I'm beyond "mild" and I never have them and I don't even take the medication I was prescribed. Suicide is a permenant solution to a temporary problem. I have no pitty or sorrow for anyone who would take their own life because they are depressed. There are a lot of other things involved like how well her head is on her shoulders, how much support she has from her family and friends. There are other things as well that will play into it as well. Are there things that when she is feeling down she can go out and do(that she enjoys doing) that will help her kick that feeling. Another thing that will have bearing on the whole of it is her religious beliefs, I don't know how religious you or your wife are, but that will have a bearing on things as well.
Just my thoughts on it.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:28:14 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/18/2003 8:30:49 AM EDT by lvgunner777]

Originally Posted By swingset:
I wouldn't worry too much....unless you plan on hiding rope, knives, sleeping pills, drain cleaner and boring holes in the garage door to ventilate the fumes.

If someone is determined to hurt themselves, they won't need a gun.

Be there for your wife, keep yourself even and steady and she will get through it. I speak from painful personal experience.




This is sound advice.

I believe it to be true that most people don't have the balls to put a gun to their head and pull the trigger. Most people that attempt suicide seem to do it by more "humane" ways. Like taking a bottle of Tylenol or sitting in the garage with the car running. These acts are more of a reach out for attention and help as opposed to a real attemp at killing themselves.

Everyone here has suffered from what would be called mild depression at some point in our lives. We certainly didn't go hide on a deserted island with nothing around us but sand and water.

I know that your question had nothing to do with depression per say but still, hear me out.

If your wife sees you scrambling to hide all of your guns from her, what is she going to think?? She is probably going to get even more paranoid and could really start to believe she must be crazy if you are taking such rash measures because of her.

We all get depressed, I feel it is an important part of life. It is really hard to enjoy the highs of our life if we never experience lows. There needs to be a balance. Unfortunatley I feel the doctors of today are owned by the drug companies. The first thing they want to do is pump you full of some anti-depressant. I say that is wrong because experiencing lows and highs is important. A lot of that medication not only curbs your lows, but it also curbs life's natural highs as well, making sort of a walking zombie.

I know how this stuff works, my mother has been on anti-depressants for the last 15 years. She is convinced she can't function without them, the doctors have convinced her she will just completely break down if she stops taking the happy little pills. I knew my mother before she started taking the pills, she is a different person now, she really is.

Anyway, I will pray for you and your wife's situation.

I encourage you to try to keep as much normalcy as possible. If she sees you hiding your guns from her she is not going to think she is trustworthy anymore. You don't want that.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:39:15 AM EDT
If you think someone might be able to strong arm their way into the Homak cabinets you should upgrade to a full-blown gun safe. That's what I did. I also sprung for a fire resistant model so I can store ammo and important papers.

Get a bedside pistol safe for your carry gun and adopt the mindset that the gun only has two homes; on you, and in the safe. That makes it easier to keep track of and reduces the chance of it falling into the wrong hands.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:40:07 AM EDT
Use your guns, go shooting or hunting.


Been down this road myself. GET A NEW WIFE!

This is just the beginning of a life full of shit for YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Cut your losses now and for GOD's sake, move on with your life.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:45:19 AM EDT
Don't worry about it. My wife suffers from manic depression . I have been married to her for 15 years and she has never even thought of using a gun to end her life. She loves to go to the range with me and shoot. If you start treating you wife any different it will only make things worse. It is treatable and if it's a mild case you should be happy about that.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 9:14:18 AM EDT
Revolvers can be secured by opening the cylinder and putting a padlock around the top strap. Master locks even sells padlocks with rubber covered hasps so you don't have to worry about the finish on your weapons.

Good luck.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 9:23:20 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/18/2003 9:24:16 AM EDT by Gloftoe]

Originally Posted By sniper1az:
Use your guns, go shooting or hunting.


Been down this road myself. GET A NEW WIFE!

This is just the beginning of a life full of shit for YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Cut your losses now and for GOD's sake, move on with your life.


Nice advice

BACK on topic. I'm no lawyer, but I wouldn't worry about it. I'm of the strong opinion that "depression" is WAY overdiagnosed in this country. Paxil, Zoloft, etc. are overprescibed. It's Ritalin for adults! I'm pretty well adjusted, and I bet that some psychiatrist could come up with SOME reason that I should be taking Paxil or Zoloft.

That being said, I KNOW that there are real depressed people out there. There ARE people that DO need to take some medication for it. However, all this "mild depression" that is being diagnosed around the country? Pure BS, IMHO.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 9:40:11 AM EDT


Depression is a natural occurance. Its part of being human and its there for a reason. I would try natural ways of getting through it like some of the suggestions already posted, long before I would use a drug to supress it.


Link Posted: 11/18/2003 9:51:07 AM EDT
I did the paxil thing for a while, and that shit is NASTY. Especially comeing off it. I was more messed up coming off paxil than when I was depressed to begin with.

As far as the guns go, I wouldn't worry about it too much, but they're right -- BE THERE for your wife. The little things *DO* count.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 9:56:04 AM EDT
This past year I went through a low point, suffered from depression pretty bad. It got to the point where I thought that suicide would be easier than continuing, but I NEVER thought that it was an option. I saw a couselor, and was able to talk about things that were bothering me, and it helped. The first step to not feeling as depressed is to be able to admit to yourself that you are suffering from depression, and that your life is not truly as bad as you think it is. As long as your wife is past that point, I don't see any reasons to increase security past what you should normally have.
With that said, I hope the medication works well, and your wife can start enjoying life again. I also second the advice to get out and change the scenery. My only other advise is to go to different places each time, tr new activities(nothing too big like deciding to jump out of a plane if you've never done that before), but maybe one night take some dance lessons, another night just goto a nice resurant , or maybe do a little art/craft project together if that isn't something you normally do.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 10:17:05 AM EDT
I understand your concern but I don't feel it is warranted (of course I do not know all the details). If she is taking medicine for the depression she should not have suicidal tendencies if it works properly and is taken properly. BTW, more women choose to overdose if they are going to commit suicide. Some of the anti-depressants have an adverse effect on some people. I know there are lawsuits against the makers of Prozac and Paxil, supposedly because they cause some people to become violent.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 10:19:51 AM EDT
Just get her the help she needs. You can not totally safeproof her existance.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 10:50:07 AM EDT
You’re the guy on the ground – only you know what your wife is up against!!

I’ll concur with a good safe and/or disassembling the firearms. Also lock up the ammo.

If she wants to hurt herself, you probably can’t stop her. Still, you absolutely don’t want to inadvertently help her!!

Once that bullet exits the barrel, you can’t put it back in!

Good luck!!
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 10:58:38 AM EDT
I wouldn't worry about it too much. Most women use something other then a firearm to commit suicide. Heck, when I get depressed buying a new gun is normally the only way to cheer me up. On another note you have to think, what if someone broke into the house and was going to do harm to your wife, would you want to deny her access to something that just may save her life? Set down with her and talk this out, tell her your feeling on the subject and that you love her and are concerned for her safety. Let her know that if she ever gets feeling of suicide to call you and you'll drop everything and come home to be with her and help her thru it. I think that would give her some peace of mind and you as well.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 3:14:28 PM EDT
Thank you all for your wonderful support and advice--except for the clown who suggested a new wife. After 3 years of dating and 16 years of marriage, I think I'm committed (though I tease her than when she hits 40, I'm going to trade her in for two 20s...)

Our vows were the traditional ones--"for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, till death do us part." I don't make promises I don't intend to keep.

My wife is considered "functionally situationally depressed," meaning she has the signs of depression but manages to get through the day very well, and that the depression is made worse by her daily circumstances. For example, she gets depressed every time we move--and since I'm in the military, and we've moved 3 times in two years, that's kind of tough on her. She's been on varying doses of Zoloft for almost a year now, and it has made a world of difference, though she still has good days and bad days.

She has told me she has never considered hurting herself or others; in fact, she doesn't even like firearms and tolerates my hobby. I do NOT believe she is a threat to herself or our family, however, I'm also of the "plan for the worst, hope for the best" mindset.

I guess I misspoke on my first post, using the word "worried" when not required (please note the time of the post--5:33AM); while I'm obviously concerned about her mental and physical health, having the guns available to her physically doesn't worry me as much as the legal aspects. After reading the post about the guy who left his pistol out for his wife, two days after her release from the institution, I was really wondering about the legal aspects. (personally, I think that guy's guilty of killing his wife, but that's another story.)
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 5:55:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TNFrank:
I wouldn't worry about it too much. Most women use something other then a firearm to commit suicide. Heck, when I get depressed buying a new gun is normally the only way to cheer me up. On another note you have to think, what if someone broke into the house and was going to do harm to your wife, would you want to deny her access to something that just may save her life? Set down with her and talk this out, tell her your feeling on the subject and that you love her and are concerned for her safety. Let her know that if she ever gets feeling of suicide to call you and you'll drop everything and come home to be with her and help her thru it. I think that would give her some peace of mind and you as well.



This is actually my biggest concern; how to balance her safety against...well, her safety. Seems to be mutually exclusive.

Bottom line, I don't believe she would ever consider suicide or is a threat to anyone else. However, I think there are reasonable precautions I can take. Since she doesn't really like firearms in the first place, and doesn't often get into the gun cabinet without me being there, AND hasn't shown any violent tendencies whatsoever, I think I'm OK with current firearm security.

Thanks to all for your concerns and advice. Y'all have actually been a blessing and a comfort. I figure it's always good to ask the question of people who have been there, and have them tell you "it's not so bad as you may think," than to wear the rose-colored glasses.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 6:19:40 PM EDT
Use caution if she stopping taking her meds cold turkey or if you suspect she has. I have seen some very weird behavior when folks stop taking their meds.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 6:32:38 PM EDT
As others have said, I would not be overly concerned if what your wife has is actually "mild" depression. I'm guessing she's on something like a moderate dose of Zoloft. Most people in this position aren't going to shoot themselves.

I would focus on helping your wife enjoy life and get out of the rut that she is in.
Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:17:32 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/18/2003 8:20:04 PM EDT by JustAGirl]

Originally Posted By CS223:
Well since we are on the topic of depression, stay away from Paxil, that shit is evil.


ditto that!!!


Ask your doc about Remeron zoloft, it has no withdrawl symptoms, little side effects and it can put your depression into remission.

Regading the thereputic effects of turkey, there is a supplement called 5-HTP. Do a google search on it. It is an amino acid that increases the seratonin in the brain. It is very inexpensive & effective unlike St. Johns Wort that is over priced and of little value.

5-HTP Data:

"5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is an amino acid that occurs naturally in the body and is the final step in the production of the neurotransmitter serotonin, an important chemical that's responsible for many of the brain impulses involving satisfaction and well being. 5-HTP is created through the hydroxylating of Tryptophan. Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that must be taken in through protein containing foods since the body can not synthesize it."

Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:24:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By CS223:
Don't get so worked up about it. In absolute all honesty the drugs they put her on are far more dangerous than the guns in the house. Her problem is going to be aggrivated by the shorter days & less sunlight. So I will give you some advice, get her out of the house regularly, the change of scenery will be theraputic. Even if you just go to McDonalds for a drive & a Coke after work. Bust up the mundane routine that she has gotten used to. Have a few "us" nights during the week, no TV, no computer, no ARFCOM. Help her clean house, be attentive, do something quirky or goofy once in a while. Get out on the weekends, bring home dinner as a surprise one night, take her to the range, a museum, an art show, the zoo, visit friend etc. Check the events in the paper to see whats going on & spread things out. You don't want to do something major everyday, just break up the routine and have something different to look forward to.

The SSRI's that they prescribe today are not good for you WRONG!!. Many have awful withdrawl symtoms especially Paxil CORRECT!!. Depression isn't a pleasant ailment but mild bouts can be treated other ways than with drugs not always. Be sure your diet is balanced. Severe cases, like bi-polar disorder may take years to find the right drug combination, I have a dear friend of mine who is bi-polar and it crushes me to see her suffer but they finally balanced her meds and she is doing well.
One other note, folks who suffer from depression and cover up their suffering pretty well. You're wise to be aware and take precautions but I would hope that the bond between you & your wife is strong enought such that she would come to to help cope instead of taking some other action.

Link Posted: 11/18/2003 8:34:34 PM EDT

Originally Posted By limaxray:
Thank you all for your wonderful support and advice--except for the clown who suggested a new wife. After 3 years of dating and 16 years of marriage, I think I'm committed (though I tease her than when she hits 40, I'm going to trade her in for two 20s...)

Our vows were the traditional ones--"for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, till death do us part." I don't make promises I don't intend to keep.

My wife is considered "functionally situationally depressed," meaning she has the signs of depression but manages to get through the day very well, and that the depression is made worse by her daily circumstances. For example, she gets depressed every time we move--and since I'm in the military, and we've moved 3 times in two years, that's kind of tough on her. She's been on varying doses of Zoloft for almost a year now, and it has made a world of difference, though she still has good days and bad days.

She has told me she has never considered hurting herself or others; in fact, she doesn't even like firearms and tolerates my hobby. I do NOT believe she is a threat to herself or our family, however, I'm also of the "plan for the worst, hope for the best" mindset.

I guess I misspoke on my first post, using the word "worried" when not required (please note the time of the post--5:33AM); while I'm obviously concerned about her mental and physical health, having the guns available to her physically doesn't worry me as much as the legal aspects. After reading the post about the guy who left his pistol out for his wife, two days after her release from the institution, I was really wondering about the legal aspects. (personally, I think that guy's guilty of killing his wife, but that's another story.)



You have already answered your question. She has stated she would not harm herself. You lnpw your wife, you'll be able to tell if she is getting worse. Just watch her behavior. If she starts isolating more and more then talk to her and her doctor. Mild depression not really something you should worry about, with the right medications you will notice only slight differences between the depressed wife and the old wife who was not depressed.
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