Everyday features

These are a few photos from around town in the last few days.

The rain photos are a little artsy for newspaper fare, but I decided I was going to push the limits a bit.

Sunday was a day without much direction. Among my finds were two sisters playing in Chickamauga Lake above a TVA dam. The latter photo is a set of neighbors in an historic neighborhood. The 10-year-old girl and her two sisters watch the neighbors house and pets when she and her husband are away. And the woman watches the three sisters when their mother is working a night shift as a nurse at a local hospital. They were standing at the picket fence talking about new neighbors down the street.

You have to trust your barber to fall asleep when he has a blade pressed against your skull. The snoozer has been coming to the Live and Let Live Barber Shop and Laundromat for over 22 years.



Chattanooga is still managing to expand through tough economic times. Because of Volkwagen's new plant, the town has somehow landed on German radar. They seem to be flocking here to buy and expand our industrial ventures. This company builds the towers for wind turbines.


An historic United Methodist Church caught fire on Sunday, just before the youth group was scheduled to meet. The neighborhood church drew a crowd - about 150 people stood on the surrounding street corners, some of them crying, as the roof collapsed in the flames. The pastor led the youth away from the building as the firemen moved the line back and the blaze grew stronger. In the third image, looking through a window that once held stained glass, the brass knob at the end of the altar rail is visible under the pile of debris. Federal invesitgative teams were brought in, but the fire was ultimately ruled accidental. All of the rafters, utility pipes and fallen luber were lifted through the roof, in hopes of salvaging what was left of the brick walls and windows.

Pets on parade

This was a day full of funny animals, circling the infield and the convention center.

New friend

The baby macaroni penguin at the aquarium is almost as big as its parents after only a month-and-a-half. The aviculurists have taken to walking him once a day to make him somewhat accustomed to human contact. Normally he/she is rather reserved on such occasions, but perhaps the camera brought something new out in her/him. It was running around in circles, wildly flapping. At one point, it tripped onto my foot, then decided it seemed like a pretty good place to hang out.
In the daily paper critique on Friday, the writer said the penguin photos stole the show!



I double-checked with the sports department the night before this assignment to make sure the time was right, since it's 30 miles from the newspaper. I got down there, and football practice in the new stadium was over by the time I showed up. So, this is what I found - a handful of guys sitting at the top of the new bleachers they were still constructing.

Community clash

There have been five shootings by police in Chattanooga and the surrounding area this summer, and the local NAACP held a community meeting to answer questions and concerns. They are conducting an independent investigation into the police conduct in each case. The preacher in the second photo introduced the word "murder" into the conversation to describe actions taken by the police in each instance. Then someone accused the spokesperson for the police department of forsaking the community and her faith to lie on behalf of the police department, since she is on their payroll. Another officer had to restrain her, and the NAACP president tried to regain control of the room. The final image is the mother of a 15-year-old boy who was shot in the back by police officers two weeks ago. No one seemed to leave with any sense of having resolved the issue.


I sent to photograph a welding company the evening before a big event. Aside from the manager, who was giving us a walking tour and the students left to demo things for us, this is the only person I saw in action. He was on the edge of a huge simulation pool that mirrors nuclear facilities across the country.


Claudette comes to town

These two college freshman headed for the North Shore to window shop and eat ice cream after their first day of classes at a new school. Tropical storm Claudette blew in and drenched the town just as they headed across the bridge back to school.

Southern charm

I was outside in the sun and the heat for 5 hours of my shift and had to go behind the stands at one point - not sure if I was about to throw up or pass out. Not one, but two different people from the concessions stand saw me sitting there red as a beet, with about 50 pounds of gear. They both came over and demanded that I drink a glass of ice water and sit until I felt better.
I love the South. People rescue me all the time.

On the rocks

This Chattanooga couple watched the sun set over the valley from Sunset Rock on Lookout Mountain. It's a spot frequented by climbers for the bluffs below, but somehow kept secret from the general public.

Final round

Most golf courses strike me as somewhat pretentious (this is because I've never played the sport). This course being no exception. I get distracted by the things happenning around the game, which is problematice, since my shutter is only allowed to click away after the club and ball connect.



We were doing a story on primary care physicians, and this doctor-patient moment made me smile. The doctor opened a practice in LaFayette, Ga., six years ago because most of the primary care physicians were nearing retirement age. It seemed like a place that would need him in the years to come, so he stayed.

Back to school

I ran around in circles this morning - three schools before 9 a.m. The first one is the first charter school in the county, which the woman hugging and watching founded. They got their certificate of occupancy for the building at 3 p.m. the day before, and the bus was carrying students that had boarded the worng one earlier that morning.

Old man

This baby has already outlived the last known case of his rare lung disease. It was such a gift to be able to photograph him with his mother. Since every day is uncertain, having documentation of this moment was incredibly important to the family.



This seemed to be the face every graduate makes from the floor to the proud parents waving in the stands.


It has been the word of the day. I was supposed to be three places at the same time today. Then this fire started at a plastics company. You could see and smell it from about 2 miles away. It was 95 degrees and hotter inside that building, so the firefighters alternated being close to the blaze. I shot these still photographs plus a video, then kissed my sports assignments goodbye. It's a hard pill to swallow - working so hard but sacrificing quality to do it. Not that these turned out terribly, but you couldn't pay me to post the football I shot today.

I promise

The next five photos will not be "cute" kid pictures. I couldn't resist this one, though. He was working so hard to make that fingerprint.


I breezed through the Imagination Station on a 95-degree day and found only one family out to play. I did however, find an interesting vantage point while she was trying to find her brother.

East enders

On the whole, the photo staff seem inclined to come back with feature photos of poor minority children. This has more to do with location than anything, since most areas surrounding the paper are not so affluent. We also tend to hunt on the way to and from the building. The homeless hang out closer but aren't so keen on having their photos made. I diverged from the pattern this week and headed east to find the well-off white children - playing in the country club pool and playing hide and seek.