Sunday, February 3, 2008

Flint Images: Steve Jessmore's Community

"I just felt like this is my city, this is home. I'm proud of it. Why should I be ashamed to represent Flint or wear the tattoo so everyone can see where I'm from?" said David Velez, who has the name of his hometown tattooed on his neck. Valez's dream of opening a Latino supermarket and restaurant is a reality. He was renting and this year bought a building and is renovating it. "All my life growing up here there wasn't really anything here for the Latino community," Velez said. "A lot of things I have are necesities for our families. I want people to feel welcome here in Flint, a little bit of sense of their home." La Tienda Familia De Latinos means 'The Family Store for Latinos.'
The photo of Valez is by the Steve Jessmore, who recently left The Flint Journal to become photo editor at The Sun News in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
It is part of a series that earned special recognition in the 2006 Best of Photojournalism contest sponsored by the National Press Photographers Association.

1 comment:

  1. Man, I hated reading that Steve Jessmore was leaving Flint. His photo essays on the positive people who keep on fighting the good fight in Flint were memorable.
    Another good one leaves.


Thanks for commenting. I moderate comments, so it may take a while for your comment to appear. You might enjoy my book about Flint called "Teardown: Memoir of a Vanishing City," a Michigan Notable Book for 2014 and a finalist for the 33rd Annual Northern California Book Award for Creative NonFiction. Filmmaker Michael Moore described Teardown as "a brilliant chronicle of the Mad Maxization of a once-great American city." More information about Teardown is available at