More than a decade before the Americans With Disabilities Act was passed, a reporter and I did an in-depth story in words and pictures around people challenged with physical disabilities.
Mobility for this young mother was virtually impossible without the aid of a crutch. I remember the difficulty trying to corral her toddler as I photographed them getting ready for church one Sunday morning. Ascending the steep and narrow stairs of her home was an effort most of us take in stride.
In many ways, taking pictures is the easy part. Afterward, deciding which image — or collection of such — that best tell the story can be difficult. In this case, I shot hundreds of frames that I had to wade through.
It wasn’t long before I decided to seek editing and layout help from photographer friends at our sister newspaper. Their input expanded my thinking and created a much better story. It also served as a lesson in the benefits of a mastermind.
Out of all that film, the roll with this picture is the only one I still possess. Why this one and not all of them? What happened to it is anyone’s guess. I find it unsettling to think of all the pictures I no longer have. Some I remember, and some I don’t — all of them are lost forever either way.
Even though this picture works on its own, it’s not the best one from the story.