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Pedro Meza stands next to a piece he painted across the street from the Cook County Jail during the Meeting of Style graffiti art event in Chicago. Meza said he lost custody of his now 6-year-old daughter, Sophia, after his divorce six years ago. Over the past three years, Meza has painted her name around his neighborhood to honor her. "This is what I can do for her," he said. "Maybe someday she'll know."
Uylaine Barringer, an EPA employee who works from home, lives in Princeton, Ill., where she also cares for retired police horses. The federal government is cutting down on telework, and a return to the office 120 miles away in Chicago would mean she could no longer care for her horses. Barringer decided to take early retirement, even though it means she misses out on several hundred dollars worth of pension credits each month. Caring for the horses is a form of therapy, helping her deal with the loss of her daughter. "It’s hard to lose a child,” Barringer said. “These horses, they just helped me forget about her. I think about other things in my life, that I have so much to give and to live for."
Muskegon Clippers Peter Zimmermann rests in the dugout after an ankle injury during a game against Grand River Loggers at Marsh Field in Muskegon on July 6, 2017. Zimmermann said he was disappointed, especially because his family traveled a long way from Missouri to watch the game. Loggers defeated Clippers 6-2.
John Williams approaches the traffic to sell roses, peanuts and other snacks on an overpass on the southwest side of Chicago. Williams has driven to this same spot every morning for the past nine years to sell flowers, though he lives an hour away in a town near the Indiana border.
Intisar Bakour, 8, reaches for her favorite doll in her room in Indianapolis on March 26, 2019. Bakour said she felt nervous meeting her grandparents at the airport and didn't recognize them at first because it had been so long since they'd seen each other. "And then my mom told me that was her mom and dad, and then I knew they are my real grandparents," Bakour said.
Luke Miener spends his Thursday afternoon duck hunting at Diana Bend Conservation Area near Columbia, Missouri on Nov. 15, 2018. An avid hunter for 12 years, Miener said it was his first time trying out the spot. He finished the day empty-handed.
Gabriela Wasserman, 11, lived in Chicago's Little Village neighborhood — whose air quality is among the worst in Illinois — for her first nine years. She uses an inhaler to treat her asthma, a condition shared by her two older brothers. “It’s hard, having asthma. It can stop you from doing a bunch of stuff,” Gabriela said. "For me, it stopped me from running.”
Tanya Lozano showcases her choreography at the Healthy Hood fitness studio in Chicago on August 9, 2019. Lozano and her niece Daysha Del Valle work together to run the studio, located in the basement of her mother's church.
Khaled Assaf enters his daughter's apartment in Indianapolis on March 26, 2019. He and his wife, Mariam Rastanawi, arrived in the United States as Syrian refugees after years of waiting. They are two of the lucky few, as the United States has all but stopped allowing Syrian refugees into the country.
Lucas He, 8, explores a 19th-century-style mountain man camp during the Annual Heritage Festival and Craft Show in Columbia, Missouri on Sept. 17, 2016. A dozen artisans and tradesmen dressed in 19th century attire, demonstrated their trades and sold their wares. Xiao Ling Guo, the boy’s mother, said, “We are newcomers, so I think it’s really important for us to understand the depth of local culture.”