Months in the making, this project on local Chicago boxers, which focuses on 16-year-old Vivian “Rocky” Gutierrez, was a meaningful one for me. It takes me back to the days of covering boxing and MMA in Utah! Chicago has an equally welcoming and beautiful community. The story, photos and video are best viewed here in the Chicago Tribune:
Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford restored a 1970 Chevy Chevelle SS with help from his friends at Nortown Auto LLC, seen here in photos from Monday, Nov. 19, 2018, in Chicago. He donated the car to the Chicago Blackhawks Foundation and fans can purchase raffle tickets at Blackhawks home games or online to enter the charity drawing for the car held February 18 2019.
Crawford practiced at MB Ice Arena on February 9, his first workout since suffering a concussion December 16 and a big step toward his quest to return to game action this season.
Ice forms intricate patterns on the inside of the windows at the Garfield Park Conservatory on a freezing Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019, in Chicago.
A loss for the Chicago Blackhawks, but a perfect winter day for outdoor hockey at the 2019 NHL Winter Classic game between the Blackhawks and Boston Bruins Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Ind. Always fun to photograph for a hockey fan like myself. Thanks for looking, and happy 2019!
Another crazy year in Chicago for me, covering the highs and lows. The highlight of 2018 was the story I did on the Yoga Gardens space in Lawndale, a place of refuge in a violent city neighborhood, a nice break from the usual overnight violence summer coverage.
Thanks for looking.
This was not an easy assignment.
How do you tell a story 40 years after it happened? And such a gruesome and horrifying one?
In these photographs, the horrors of the serial killer John Wayne Gacy are portrayed to remind people what his victims endured, and to highlight the six young boys who, 40 years later in 2018, remain unidentified. John Wayne Gacy sexually assaulted, tortured and murdered at least 33 teenage boys and young men in Cook County, Illinois between 1972 and 1978 and spent 14 years on death row before he was executed by lethal injection at Stateville Correctional Center in 1994. In 2010, the case was reopened by the Cook County Sheriff and previously unknown victims William Bundy and James Haakenson were identified by modern DNA testing and other evidence and the efforts of Detective sergeant Jason Moran: “The reason why this case is still on the minds of Chicagoans and throughout the country, is not just the amount of victims Gacy had, it's because Gacy had everybody fooled, and we don't like that feeling. He was a businessman, a local businessman, he worked in politics, being a ward committeeman. He dressed up as a clown and entertained children. He would have huge parties at his residence, where 200 people would come. They would go into the house to use the washroom and there was maybe 15, 16, 17, 18 victims buried in his crawlspace. He had everybody fooled in that way and people don't like that feeling. He wasn't the ghoul that most people would expect from a serial killer.”
A team of my extremely hard-working colleagues helped create this project, and you can see the whole thing over here: John Wayne Gacy was arrested 40 years ago in a killing spree that claimed 33 victims and shattered the illusion of the safe suburban community
Saint Louis Cemetery No. 2 on a dark and stormy day Monday, Sept. 10, 2018, in New Orleans.
Thousands of people gathered to watch the 60th annual Chicago Air and Water Show at North Avenue Beach Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018, in Chicago.
A look at the rapidly expanding medical marijuana company Cresco Labs Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2018, in Joliet, Ill. The company cultivates various strands of marijuana and also extracts compounds from the plants to create cannabis candies and other edibles, and cannabis oils, tinctures and other products for a variety of uses.
Link to Chicago Tribune story by Ally Marotti: Despite low demand, medical marijuana companies in Illinois are growing
Slaves, Franz Ferdinand, Khalid, Arctic Monkeys, Durand Jones & the Indications, Knox Fortune and many more play in hot temperatures for fans at Lollapalooza 2018 in August in Grant Park, Chicago.
Indigo Monae is yoga teacher who saw a need for a safe and peaceful community space while she was living in a building next to an empty lot in the Lawndale neighborhood of Chicago. Over the past 8 years, with help from other volunteers in the yoga community and funds from classes taught at Montrose Beach, Monae transformed the empty lot into a lush garden with a deck for yoga practice, drawing in young and old from the neighborhood. While living in Lawndale, she found access to healthy food options troublesome, and after witnessing young people involved in violence and drug dealing outside their home, she and her friends decided, “First of all, we need food, we need to teach them yoga, we need something to make them feel at peace,” she said. “So that’s how it began, just some yogis wanting to share some love.”
Link to Chicago Tribune story by Heidi Stevens: How a yoga garden nourishes the soul of a West Side block
Maritza Flores with three of her children, Skarleth Fernandez Flores, 6, Mariana Portillo Flores, 16, and Perla Flores Delgado, 3, at the home of the DeMay-Gres family, who is sponsoring her family as they seek asylum status in the United States, May 2018, in Chicago. The family left their home country of El Salvador years ago due to gang violence, living in Guatemala for awhile before ending up in Mexico. They crossed the border into the United States as part of a caravan of hundreds of people, organized by Pueblo Sin Frontreras, where they surrendered and sought asylum. Officials determined that Flores' 18-year-old daughter, who made it across the border with the family, would have to make a solo plea for asylum because she’s an adult, and remains in an immigration detention center in San Diego. Pueblo Sin Frontreras worked with Showing Up for Racial Justice, a national network of activists, to find sponsor families to house those in the caravan who did not have relatives in the United States. Flores said she is grateful for the family’s generosity, but she can’t get out of her mind her 18-year-old daughter languishing in a detention center.
Costumes and cosplay from Friday, April 6 and Saturday, April 7, 2018, at the Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo at McCormick Place in Chicago. (Erin Hooley/Chicago Tribune)
Owner Buritt Bulloch makes donuts, as he does every day, Tuesday, March 6, 2018, at Old Fashioned Donuts in the Roseland neighborhood of Chicago. He and his family, including his granddaughter, Drejauna, who works the counter, have been serving up donuts and other earthly delights on the South Side for over 45 years.
Playwright Loy Webb sits for a portrait at the Den Theatre Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018, in Chicago. She wrote "The Light," as described by The New Colony, "A surprise proposal takes an unexpected turn that upends the world of Genesis and Rashad, forcing them to confront a devastating secret from the past and putting the future of their relationship at risk. Featuring two of Chicago’s most dynamic actors, "The Light" is a 70-minute, real-time rollercoaster journey of laughter, romance and despair that uncovers how the power of radical love can be a healing beacon of light."
2017. What a year. Full of ups and downs. A pretty good year for photography for me, but it was hard work and sometimes stressful: Publishing the year long story on Eddie Bolden, exonerated from prison after 22 years, covering overnight violence in Chicago again during the summer and fall, lots of sports (though the Cubs bowed out early)...and more.
A rough but promising year as a woman and "Enemy of the American People," aka, a journalist. I am lucky to have supportive editors and colleagues. I am thankful and proud to do what I do and will continue to tell the stories of people in my community and shed light on an unseen truth or two. The people I meet every day truly enrich my own life. 2018 looks bright.
Faces of Dia de los Muertos Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017, at Dvorak Park in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago.
The lovely and bright six-year-old Jamela Anthony borrowed reporter Lisa Schencker's iPhone and small tripod and was busy filming herself when I arrived to photograph her at home in Chicago. Jamela has undergone extensive treatment for an aggressive tumor on her spinal cord that is now in remission as of June 21. Jamela danced, jumped rope and took her mother's phone to flip through photos as she kept Lisa's phone on record. She pouted a little when I asked her to sit next to her mother on the couch for an interview. She wanted to set up my tripod and be behind the camera.
Jamela's family has relied on Medicaid to cover the extensive costs of 52 weeks of chemotherapy and six weeks of radiation required to treat her cancer. She spent most of the year as a five-year-old in the hospital and missed school while her mother, Tangela Watson, missed work to care for her daughter. Watson worries about how the Medicaid program might change if the Senate's Obamacare replacement bill becomes law.
Click hear to watch a video of Jamela, including video clips she created on Lisa's phone, and read more about how potential cuts to Medicaid can affect children in Lisa's story:
A few photos from a fun shoot at the new French restaurant in the Waldorf Astoria hotel in downtown Chicago Margeaux Brasserie. Some nice-looking food and beautiful cocktails.