I don’t really know how to start this post, so I’m just going to jump right in….
This past month of October I have been working on a story. It was unlike any I have done before. I love my job and the assignments I receive – I get to go to concerts for free, take super awesome photos of my favorite artists, travel to neat festivals, photograph bars for review, see events for free, I pretty much get paid to have fun – but I wasn’t feeling very fulfilled emotionally in the types of things I was photographing. That is when I decided I needed to change directions and put my efforts into something that mattered more than surface value. The entire reason I have studied journalism for so many years is because I want to help people my writing their stories, photographing their lives and amplifying their cause.
The Diviney’s story wasn’t news to me. My mother has followed and donated to Ken’s blog since the attack on Ryan happened and shared it with me. I’ve been following along as well. I remember the first time I heard about it – a post from Ryan’s little sister Kari was floating around Facebook, describing in gut wrenching detail what happened to her big brother. I shared it, teared up and went on my way. Fast forward five years later. I now know how to do this correctly and how to do it well. I was sitting in my school library when I saw that Ken blogged a post about a skull surgery Ryan was about to undergo and, without really thinking too much into how this was going to work, I emailed my editor, he gave me the green light to write it, and then I emailed Ken with the pitch. He immediately responded and two days later I was sitting in a hospital cafeteria with Ken and Sue, witnessing first hand what it’s like to have your kid get their upteenth skull surgery.
This story took me on a month long journey to see into the lives of this family – a typical, down to earth American family – and how they deal with the huge mountain of their present day state all because Ryan, who did nothing wrong, happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Please, please, please take the time to share, like and comment on this article on The Baltimore Sun’s Darkroom page. There you can see the entire photo gallery and read the story. Ken’s blog, Ryan’s Rally, is also linked within the story. I know you guys have been bombarded with my Mobbie posts (sorry) but if you decided to click on anything from my blog, let it be this. I hope that this story will drive more traffic to their blog and not only help with donations but to also help keep this story alive. Campus violence is something that is on the rise but largely ignored and that needs to change.