My step-father Jack R. Roach passed away a two years ago. We had a relationship that was not the healthiest. It was a conflict or interests is all I will say on the subject. As a young man growing up with Jack he showed me his interests. Planes and automobiles. For a kid growing up in South Gate the only planes I knew where the ones roaring thru South Los Angeles overhead and landing some place far. The automobiles I grew up with were on the cover of Lowrider magazine with candy coated paint jobs that you only dreamt about owning.
With his passing my mother and I have been assessing his belongings left to us. There is not much family on his side to leave these precious mementos with. In the two year’s since his passing it’s been difficult for my mother to part with them. For those that have lost someone, you know it’s a task of emotion that your dealing with more then items you see. Looking thru Jack’s past for myself was to help my mother out. Let her grieve and lend some support. As I catalog and box items I came across albums of life before my mother and I were in his life. A very different man that I will never know.
Albums of photographs documenting trips to different parts of the US and a exploration of youth. A single man’s biography growing up in the 70’s. Unlike the Jack I grew up with, this man was full of vigor and had a passion for living. A once aspiring photographer that I never knew existed. A connection that I never made with a man that is now gone.
The photographs I choose here are from the only negatives I found in his possessions. It’s a interesting view of his past. A “could have been” moment that I will not get back but one that I’m am not looking for. It’s a reflection of who I am and what I am doing now. The growth of a learning man that I have gained from the relationship with my step-father. The two W’s of self: Who I want to be? Where I want to be?