Born and raised in Mountain Grove, Missouri, along with 60% of the town’s residents, Shawn Lane said he would rather live anywhere but here. Despite the lack of opportunity for employment in his field and activities for a younger generation, the 28-year-old Army Veteran is putting his dreams on hold to raise his two young daughters, Claudia 3, and Natalie 2.

Upon his return from Iraq, where he served as a wheeled vehicle mechanic in the 112th Signal Battalion Special Operations Airborne, he established himself in Texas to pursue a career working on power lines. When his partner’s struggle with addiction began to impact family life, Shawn relocated to his hometown to support his children and provide for them.

In a town with an average age of 42, where poverty rates and reports of violent crime reflect higher than the national average, Shawn remains determined to build a future for his family with help from his mother and old friends.

Produced for the Missouri Photo Workshop (MPW 70.) and residents of Mountain Grove, Missouri.

2018