NPR recently asked its followers to share images of people they've encountered with miserable, undervalued jobs. I don't think all coal miners are miserable by any means, but my mind still leaped to the days I spent with Sean and his family. Sean earned $12/hour at a small, independent mine. He rode in on his back, through tunnels so narrow that lying down was the only option. He spent most of his workday on his knees, shoveling coal back onto a conveyer belt, which was especially grueling with no room to stand. Sean's wife was alone with the kids most of the time- when he wasn't working, he liked to sit in their bedroom alone with his beer and painkillers and the lights off. I wondered if she invited me into her home to have another adult to talk to. They didn't have a phone, certainly no internet, and we quickly lost touch. When I was back in Jolo years later, I found their trailer. A neighbor told me that Sean had died and his wife had moved back to Tennessee, and I was sad for all of them and hoped she wasn't as lonely now. @npr #pshardwork
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  • marisharocksNPR recently asked its followers to share images of people they've encountered with miserable, undervalued jobs. I don't think all coal miners are miserable by any means, but my mind still leaped to the days I spent with Sean and his family. Sean earned $12/hour at a small, independent mine. He rode in on his back, through tunnels so narrow that lying down was the only option. He spent most of his workday on his knees, shoveling coal back onto a conveyer belt, which was especially grueling with no room to stand. Sean's wife was alone with the kids most of the time- when he wasn't working, he liked to sit in their bedroom alone with his beer and painkillers and the lights off. I wondered if she invited me into her home to have another adult to talk to. They didn't have a phone, certainly no internet, and we quickly lost touch. When I was back in Jolo years later, I found their trailer. A neighbor told me that Sean had died and his wife had moved back to Tennessee, and I was sad for all of them and hoped she wasn't as lonely now. @npr #pshardwork

  • rebelhorseWow. His eyes.
  • beingspotDeep.
  • ferventphotogLove this portrait. It's incredible!
  • charlesmostollerAmazing photo
  • nathan_armesGreat!
  • ferventphotogAnytime I look at this portrait I see so much depths!
  • dianangilaMoving story behind the amazing image making it even more special
  • oxtxoThat almost makes me stop taking photographs.
  • gornykrzychuNice.
  • raykellett👍 👍 👍
  • weathermonOh, what a story with this image. It is a wonderful photograph, and telling of what happened to him even more powerful.
  • kayachaosYou're killin me @marisharocks every single shot moves me to my core
  • guentherpriceYou have an amazing selection of portraits, and all so well done. You make me want to pick up my camera again! Keep it up :D @marisharocks
  • dinisphotographyWow. Just wow. This photo. And story.
  • marisharocksThank you so much, @dinisphotography!!!!!! Every time I'm in the area, I visit the neighbors. It's such a sad story, and a version of it plays out a million times a day...
  • the_big_eeThat distant look so haunting such a tragic story. Make the most of everyday and help when you can!
  • marisharocksThank you for such perfect words, @the_big_ee!!!!!
  • mark_richards_time_machineIt could have been last week, last year, ten years ago, a century. Same as it ever was.
  • ystuds_a_cappellaYour photographs are incredible!
  • marisharocksMy gosh, @ystuds_a_cappella, thank you so, so, so much!!!!!
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