Next month I'll start a new chapter working in a city I love for MLive at the Grand Rapids Press. I'm grateful and excited for the chance to cover that city and I know that within time, that city its people will become as familiar as this small town. But now I'm taking a moment to touch base with the people that I know here to close out this chapter right.
My first assignment as a full-time photographer for Midland Daily News was to cover the Little League City Championship. It was July 21, 2011 and I remember having trouble with the 300mm as I tried to figure out the new equipment. I also remember a kid named Martin Money in that game. He was one of their main hitters. Flash forward four years to last week, June 17, and hours after submitting my resignation I found myself there again, at the same fields, shooting another City Championship. It felt right. Poetic. It was similar to that first game. But different. Instead of Martin Money, it was his younger brother, Alex, at the plate. And as I looked around the field, I saw so many familiar faces. In the press box was Fred Kelly, one of the sports reporters. We've probably covered every sport together from championships to cross town rivalries. Across the field, was a police officer I've met countless times on assignment watching his son in the game. I just kept thinking, I know these streets. I know these people. And I felt a certain sadness that the time here in a city that I've called home is ending. It's a good sadness. Not of regret, but of a knowledge that I'll miss this place.
The Daily News was a perfect first job. It was a proving ground. And I'm proud of the work that this little staff has done over the years starting in the current tradition with Rodney Curtis and Ryan Wood and continuing on through today. Brittney Lohmiller just published her second photo story in the paper, I know she and Nick King will continue cranking out good images, day after day.
I'm sure as the weeks go on I'll post another reflection on working here. But for now, all I feel is grateful to have been a part of the MDN for a season.
[Top: 2011. Bottom: 2015]