11 | Applied Sciences homework help


  1. Watch the documentary, “Hidden America Children of the Mountains”. 
  2. Assess the community using the four-step framework developed by Netting et al. (2008) attached.
  3. Ensure assignment is no more than 4 pages in length. Use your attached text for your in-text citations. You do not need to use other sources (i.e. a journal article) for additional citations. In-text citations must be formatted according to APA guidelines


Transcript if link does not work:


Tonight on 20/20, a Diane Sawyer special.

Travel inside a world apart into the creeks and steep hollows of the oldest mountains in America. Home to the descendants of pioneers driven by their dreams to claw through these dangerous passes and create an American continent. They are brave, tough, wary of outsiders, steeped in family and faith. They are also America’s legendary fighters.

On a proportionate basis, the Appalachian population has lost more men and women in America’s wars than any other part of the American nation.

So how is it so many of these people have been left behind? We take you tonight to one of the poorest regions in the nation where men and women die younger than other Americans, where there’s a documented epidemic of drug addiction, cancer, toothlessness, alcoholism, depression. And yet everywhere in these hills, there are so many people filled with courage and hope. Like Courtney, age 12, who has a dream and a fear.

We’re not like other people. We can’t afford food after food after food.

And Shawn Grim, the football superstar of Appalachia, sleeping at night in a truck, 18-year-old Jeremy accepting his life down inside the mine, and six-year-old Erica, we watch her grow up trying to save her mother’s life.

We need to reinvest in those people. It’s a lot easier to blame people for their poverty than to figure out what’s next.

It has been 41 years since Robert Kennedy called on the rest of America to reach out and help the poorest people of Appalachia find their future again. These poets, fiddlers, America’s toughest warriors, now fighting another kind of war in the hard mountains they call home.

A Hidden America Children of the Mountains. Here now, Diane Sawyer.

Good evening. Glad you’re with us. Tonight, after two years of reporting 1400 miles on the twisty mountain roads, we want to take you to a part of America I love, my home state of Kentucky the 300-year-old Appalachian hills. They stretch from Mississippi to New York, but we’re going to spend time tonight in Central Appalachia, eastern Kentucky and West Virginia. 2.2 million people live there. And of them, half a million live in a kind of poverty a lot of us can not imagine. We all know the stereotypes about mountain people. But before you make up your mind, the reality for some in those hills and in this tough economic time for all in the nation maybe looking at kids with so much spirit in the midst of so little will renew your faith that Americans are made of very strong stuff.

Friday night, make your way down the twisting roads of Appalachia and up ahead the lights are on in thriving Paintsville, Kentucky. A high school senior, a mountain superstar, is on fire. Shawn Grim, just 5 foot seven inches tall 170 pounds, but the will of a lion. Opponents call him the grim reaper. With college recruiters watching, he leads the state in touchdowns. He throws. He catches. He trampolines off the other players and keeps on running. Look at that again. But when we meet him, the golden pride of Appalachia, is sleeping in a truck.

These are all my clothes for school in my truck, because I ain’t got nowhere to go right now. I got my jersey, got some jogging pants.

He tries to wake each morning in time to shower at a friend’s house.

My toothpaste and toothbrush are in my glove box.

Sometimes he naps on an air mattress in the locker room, doing homework wherever he can. Anonymous donors give him black socks he needs for the game. He tells us he wants a different life from his family up in the hills, mother, stepfather, brother, sister, stepbrother, two young children all in two trailers carpeted with litter, dirty diapers on the ground. Shawn says he moved out to escape the thievery, the alcohol, the undertow.

The whole entire hollow is nothing but family. And all of them hate each other, so it’s all fighting. If they own a chicken or who thinks they’re the god of the hollow, it’s all fighting about it. I want to go out here and I want to make everybody proud of me, and I want to make everybody happy that I am actually trying something and doing something with my life. And I don’t want to mess up. It’s in the middle of nowhere. You know this, right?

Yeah. Shawn says he’ll take me 30 minutes up the hill to meet this family. I’m going with you. The middle of nowhere, he says.

I swear to you. Everything that’s outside, they’ll steal it.

Up here?

Yeah, there’s thieves around here. That’s the reason you don’t leave your purse down.

Is there a drinking problem in the house?

Well, we drink. I drink one beer to flush out my kidneys and that’s it.

To flush out your kidneys? What does that mean?

It cleans them, I guess. It’s what they, what I was told. I read it in a magazine.

He says he works when he can at Burger King. He has a girlfriend from the right side of the tracks though her parents–

They hate me with a passion. Her daddy told me if I ever stepped foot on that porch of his, he’d bust my jaw. And just when you think you know this kid, listen to the song on his ring tone. [LOLLIPOP PLAYING] Oh no, you’re kidding?

I like that song. Seriously.

So this is home?

Yep. Middle of nowhere.

Hi, I’m Diane. We walk into black acrid smoke from burning rubber, Shawn’s stepfather, Rick, stepbrother, nicknamed little man, are burning tires to recycle the metal trim for money, $5 for 100 pounds. The family lives on welfare. Rick says he never learned to read.

There just ain’t nothing here. Nothing. Best money around here–


That’s the only best money all around here.

They heat the trailers with coal they dig illegally from embankments on the highways. Inside, Shawn’s mother. She has three children, eight grandchildren, she’s 36 years old. She proudly shows me the scrap books of her exceptional son.

I wanted him to have something to pass on down to his kids when he does have them.

No one in this family has never graduated high school, and Shawn says he doesn’t remember a book ever even in the house. The most valuable item under lock and key.

In here I keep all of our medicine.

Prescription pills, Appalachian gold prescribed by doctors for nerves or back pain.

If somebody wants to steal this, it would be $120 worth.

Tina tells us her Loracet goes for $10 a pill on the street. Before a big game when Shawn looks for support, his stepfather is dead drunk.


My dad’s drinking tonight. What Dad?

What Dad? Don’t ever [BLEEP] hear, what Dad?

I hold all my anger in until Friday nights. I go out and I give it my all. I release it on the field.

I thank you, Father, that you’ve given us courage. Say I’ve got courage.

I’ve got courage.



I’m a football player.

I’m a football player.

And I thank for it.

And I thank you for it.

In Jesus’ mighty name.

In Jesus’ mighty name.



As his senior year is ending, an opposing team smashes into Shawn’s knee and the searing pain doesn’t stop. He’s forced to play both offense and defense, but still fights on to victory. And then, in his final game, even the will of a little lion is not enough. After all those victories, the last game goes down in defeat.

No matter what you don’t quit. You never quit.

His coach and mentor, Jim Matney, gives Shawn a quote. You measure a man’s greatness by how much it takes to discourage him.

He’s fought his way out of just a really difficult life.

And what’s next for Shawn Grim and the family up the hills about to deliver another blow?


Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.

Up in Calf Creek, Kentucky, ask a little kid to sing you a song, and they’ll sing you a song of Jesus.

[SINGING] 12-year-old Courtney, her sister, 11-year-old Mary, tell us a secret about their mom.

Can I be honest? Our mommy used to be hooked on drugs, and we did not like it one bit.

Courtney says she used to lock herself in the bathroom and cry when her mom got high. They bounced from place to place, and are grateful they now have a place to sleep, her grandparents’. Where her two uncles, one aunt, three sisters, and her mom’s boyfriend, Bill, also live.

There’s 12 people living in this house altogether. Honestly, I would love for me, my mom, Bill, and us girls to have our own home. But we do not have the money to do that. Bill is wanting to get a job, but we can’t because we ain’t got a car to get him back and forth.

Courtney shows us an A on her report card, and tells us about her two simple wishes a home, and she says someday she’d like to have boots with little fake further on the top like the ones Hannah Montana wears on TV. Courtney’s clothes are stuffed in a suitcase under the bed.

Honestly, we can barely afford food. Whenever her food stamps are all gone, we run out of food. We don’t have bread, we don’t have meat. Last time we was out of food, the only thing we had in our fridge was butter and ranch. We’re not like other people. We can’t afford food after food after food.

Fruits and vegetables a rare luxury because of the expense. Their mother’s food stamps are $523 a month. Milk runs out fast. Courtney’s uncle, called Uncle Duck, puts Pepsi in two-year-old Sable’s sippy cup. Courtney is one of those children whose face seems to reach right back across the centuries to the famous portraits by Walker Evans, Doris Allman, Earl Palmer. Where worry and wariness are in the faces of the children. And the adults are ravaged by exhaustion, defeat. Angel is ravaged by something modern. She’s Courtney’s mother. She lost her teeth years ago. She’s 30 years old.

I would have to have 10 pain pills just to get started to not be sick. I would do 30 to 40 a day easy. There were days I’d go to drug counseling, but as soon as I left, I’d sit in the parking lot and snort a pill.

She’s part of an epidemic in these mountains. Eastern Kentucky has a prescription drug abuse rate twice that of major cities like New York or Miami. Courtney and her sisters remember when their mother would disappear for days on end.

Mary does not want me to go anywhere. Mary will make me pinky promise that I will not leave.

Angel says she’s now trying to give her children the future they deserve. And before dawn, gets them on the 6:15 school bus.

Come on. You’ve got four minutes. Love you. Love you.

Then she and her boyfriend, Bill, start the trek to the welfare mandated GED class in the center of town. the walk, 8 miles one way. It takes nearly two hours.

All I can really do is try to salvage what little bit I can. After the class, another two hours and eight miles in the freezing cold to go home. It starts to rain.

No umbrella?

That just weighs you down.

Angel says if she can get that GED in two months, she has a chance of a job, getting off welfare. Are you ready for it?

I believe so. I believe I am.

Angel’s mother, 49-year-old Dinah, is the rock of the family.

Now, I’m not well educated. But if you take that time to sit down and talk to me, then you’re going to see, hey, she’s not so stupid after all.

Her strength comes from faith, praying to Jesus that Angel will succeed. We meet her at choir practice at the Homecoming Church two miles up the hills on frozen roads.


In this church, we see the Sunday offering of $1.85.

Everybody that goes to the church is poor. I pray that God sends somebody to help the poor.

It’s a dark night out here.


Back home at the end of the day, a hymn from the hills.


Our pinky promise, remember every night?

I pinky promise.

Don’t leave, OK?

OK. Love you.

Joblessness in the Inez area is attributable primarily to a general lack of industrialization and losses in the coal mining industry.

Inez, Kentucky, 1964. Lyndon Baines Johnson declares his war on poverty here. And then four years later, Bobby Kennedy inspires Appalachian pride as he travels over 200 miles in two days to hear the stories of the families.

All of us working together, all of us recognizing our responsibilities, in my judgment, we can have some success.

Back then, Bill Gorman was a TV reporter walking the streets of Hazard with Bobby Kennedy. 41 years later, he’s the mayor of Hazard walking the same street with me and saying, it is better.

This changed a whole lot after Bobby visited here.

There’s been money for new schools and highways which helped many communities flourish.

But you have two Appalachias today. Communities very similar to what one would find in many suburban places all across the country.

But up in the hills, it’s a different story. Coal companies have taken billions in profit out of the mountains.

We end up making huge sacrifices. And then, if you look at the area, you see people are poor, the educational attainment is less, and often people are not as healthy. So whatever opportunity that’s supposed to be there, just hasn’t arrived.

Today, in the depressed counties of Central Appalachia, families have an average annual income less than the cost of a new car, the second lowest in the nation. And the trash, a kind of defeatism, left on the lawn. But what’s happened to pride?

I think pride is still there. The difference between urban places and Appalachia is the availability of government resources to pick up that trash. Mountain people, I don’t think, have given up. But when you organize, and you fight, and you struggle, and things don’t change markedly for you, then you step back and you find a way for your family to survive.

And one thriving industry for survivors, dealing prescription drugs.

Particularly in Appalachia, we’ve seen it be, kind of, a sacrifice area where big pharmaceutical companies were able to dump drugs into the area and really get off fairly scot-free.

In 2007, Purdue Pharma, the company which markets the potent OxyContin, was fined 635 million dollars for deliberately misleading people about the addictiveness of the drug. At the time, doctors in the mountains had been prescribing it for everything from back pain to arthritis. And while Lortab and Xanax are often obtain through Medicaid, robbery often produces the OxyContin for dealers.

They can make more money in one weekend here in Harlan county than they can in an entire month on the big city streets of Chicago, or Detroit, or New York.

Karen Engle is executive director of the law enforcement and education initiative Operation Unite. We’re told some prescription drugs like Xanax and Lortab have a street price from $5 to $15 per pill. But OxyContin, even if you can only get it once a month, is the prize. So what’s the street value of a pill now?

Of an OxyContin? 120 bucks.

Yes. $120.

Here, in Harlan?


Our driver, an undercover detective, says the dealer could be anyone next door.

It’s just survival. It’s not that I’m trying to hurt anybody or nothing, you know?

I think you see drug addiction in communities where people don’t see a place for themselves, don’t see a trajectory.

A babysitter deals OxyContin while a child watches cartoons, a mayor indicted for trading pills for votes though he plead not guilty.

Sorry, no comment.

And for every adult dealing or using drugs, a child begins to drown. Five years ago, WYMT Mountain News profiled six-year-old Erica Floyd on Mother’s Day. Her mother in jail for the fourth DUI.

She drinks sometimes, but that’s not right for me. But I love her.

Erica kept a drawer of pictures for when her mom comes home, crossing her fingers every time the phone rings.

[SINGING] I don’t know the rest.

Erica then, Erica now, 11 years old still trying to help the mother now battling addiction to Lortab and OxyContin.

She’s almost 50. And if I don’t get her out of this town soon, then she’ll probably die any day.

Mother and daughter talk of love.

Our relationship is like–

Peas and carrots.

Oreo and ice cream.


Amid the broken promises.

She’s all I have. And it’s more to me than any drug anything in this world. And I’m sorry you’ve had to go through this.

It’s OK.

No, it’s not OK.

Social services forces her mother into rehab.

I love you.

I love you too.

Mommy, I love you, Mommy.

It’s OK. It’s a good thing, Erica.

But soon, Erica’s mother is back home and sliding again. And Erica can be seen walking alone through her town which is boarded up, abandoned by the coal company.

The reason I go on these walks is because I want to get away from my mom when she’s like that.

She’s just vulnerable. I pick her up on the streets at night sometimes walking.

Her school counselor tells us Erica’s trying to hang on in classes. I hear that you pulled your math grade up.

I had an F before, then I brang it up to a C. And then, now it’s two points away from A.

Congratulations. How about with you and your mom? Do you know what kind of drugs she was doing? Did you see her?

No, she wouldn’t let me see her. But I know It was happening.

How did you know?

She had a look in her eyes when she lied to me.

Why do you think she does it?

Pain, misery.

What would you say to everybody out there about being a kid here?

You’ve got to make the better of it while she’s still alive that just to keep on holding on tight.

Next up, some of the heroes in these hills.

There are so many heroes in these hills, teachers, social workers, mentors reaching out to a population isolated by the steep mountains and spotty access to any transportation. Take 81-year-old Eula Hall, nicknamed the Mother Theresa of Mud Creek. She spent 36 years driving up into the mountains herself to haul the sick out of the hills and into her clinic. We first heard about her on GMA in 1983. She was in tears because someone had burned her clinic down. She set up a table under a tree, kept right on going. And, today, sees 19,000 patients a year who pay only what they can. Working with her, Dr. Anant Chandel, born and raised in India.

It’s hard to believe but, yes, people are poorer in this part of the country than where I was in India.

By the way, the indomitable Eula stands watch over her prescription drugs with a gun. You bring your gun down here if the alarm goes off?

Absolutely. Ain’t going to let nobody rob this place if I can help it. I wouldn’t shoot anybody if I didn’t have to, but you can scare people with a gun.

And there’s another hero of the winding roads, Dr. Edwin Smith of Barbourville, Kentucky who took $150,000 of his own money to convert a truck into a dental office for people who sometimes pull their own teeth with pliers. That stereotype rooted in a fact. According to the Centers for Disease Control, Central Appalachia is now number one in the country for toothlessness. It’s the diet, lack of dental care, and the dentists tell us something else, a huge consumption of Mountain Dew, the soft drink with 50% more caffeine than Coke or Pepsi. It seems to be used as a kind of antidepressant. Other sodas too?

Other sodas too, but Mountain Dew is unique. It has a lot of sugar and a lot of acid.

We were told people put Mountain Dew in baby bottles and that children, two-year-olds, have 12 cavities in a couple of baby teeth.

It is rampant decay. People are addicted to Mountain Dew. It’s terrible.

And too much caffeinated soda can also lead to other things like stomach trouble. Is this your first time to see a dentist?

Yeah, that’s her first.


She’s never been.

High school junior, Casey, says he’s trying to get off drinking so much Mountain Dew. The dentist is forced to pull some of his adult teeth. 11-year-old Anthony hasn’t been able to brush his teeth in several weeks because it hurts too much.

What do you drink?

Mountain Dew.

That’s what I was afraid of.

How much do you drink? A lot? Have you been drinking it since you were really little? Well, I think the doctor’s going to tell you maybe Mountain Dew is not your best friend.

Does that hurt, honey? In a couple hours, you wouldn’t recognize this guy.

Will you send me a picture? I want to see this new smile. The Pepsi company which manufactures Mountain Dew sent us a statement saying, this is old irresponsible news. But a day later, they sent us a new statement saying, we certainly don’t advocate consumption of our products in this way. But up in the mountains, Dr. Smith is still doing battle with Mountain Dew. And his gift to the children, their smiles. Here’s little Anthony before and after. Here’s Casey before, Casey smiling now.

Mountain men, only one out of 10 will get a college degree, which is less than half the national average. And for those who do not, little opportunity. Work at Walmart, or fast food, the drug trade, or the mines. By the way, coal provides half of America’s electricity, and 16% comes from the hills of Appalachia. It’s a crossroads when a young man decides he’ll go down into the mines for life often following his father and father before him. It’s a crossroads for the families too.

There’s not a day don’t go by that I don’t pray for my boys under the ground. Then I know God’s going to bring them back.

We get permission to go down in a mine owned by Booth Energy which has a reputation for caring about safety and the men below. The death toll in the mines when Robert Kennedy was here in 1968 was 493, last year it was 51. And Booth mines sites only three deaths in the mines in 34 years. We enter the brake car and begin the journey down vertically 400 feet. After that, we’ll go 3 and 1/2 miles into the belly of the mountain. Our first stop is to see 18-year-old Jeremy a brand new miner shoveling coal onto a conveyor belt for eight hours a day, six days a week, little sunshine. Jeremy had math and wanted to be an Army engineer, but his girlfriend got pregnant. And he says providing for his family was the right thing to do. So he decided to become a miner like his dad starting salary $60,000 a year. So how do you like it so far?

Oh, I like it.

Do you really?

Yeah. I love it.

By the way, his foreman is his future father-in-law, a 25 year veteran.

He better get ready to work hard, because that’s what it takes down here. You see?

I see.

I love training these school kids. I mean, I love to watch them learn.

Like so many of the miners, they show us how they get their energy from soda pop and salt.

I’ve got pop. I’ve got chips. I’ve got a sandwich. I’ve got ham and cheese. Beanie-Weenies, cakes, candy bars.

Is this one day’s lunch?

Well, yeah. I mean, if something goes wrong down here I’ve got to have enough to do me for 2 or 3 days.

Back on the rail car, we now travel the 3 and 1/2 miles into the heart of the mountain to the most dangerous part of the mine.

I want you to get a sense of what it’s like if the lights go out here. It is the definition of pitch black. Here’s what it looks like. So you can imagine in the darkness, the machinery running, looking for the ways out of them. This is the rope you use to walk out in an emergency. Every mile extra oxygen and supplies. Up ahead, the huge, metal claw, the machine that rips coal from the belly of the mountain, releasing methane which can be highly flammable. When the machine stops, filing toward us in the dark from posts so isolated they have a silent language using their helmet lights to signal come, go, stop, we meet the tough men of the mines. As we talk to them, company officials stand on the side.

What’s the best part of this job?

It never rains.

It never rains. What’s that worst part?

The danger part of it.

How dangerous do you feel it is?

I’m used to being in it so long it just comes natural to you. You just have to watch out for yourself.

If you weren’t mining, what would you want to do?

News reporter, I guess. You’ve got very few choices, and the mining pays good money and you’ve got good insurance. I feel that we work for a safe company that will look out for us the best that they possibly can.

What about health? Lung problems anymore, anybody?


They seem to be looking over at mine officials. We’ve tried repeatedly to get firm statistics about black lung, but it’s almost impossible to nail down. One study showing black lung disease has doubled in the last decade though the coal industry says it’s not so. Booth Energy says especially not in their mines. Why is it so hard to get figures and facts? We have been digging and calling.

Who wants you to know? I mean, who’s got a stake in letting people know what the real numbers are for black lung?

Your families worry about you?

I’m sure they do.

What do you hope your kids do?

I don’t know, anything but a coal miner.

We travel back up to the sunlight to meet with the owner of the mine Jim Booth. From a family of miners, he worked his way through college by mining. He says he has 100 openings for miners, but welfare dependency and drugs are the obstacle.

The reason that we aren’t getting enough people is they really aren’t capable of passing our drug screen. It’s just, kind of, like it’s a cop out. If they’re sedated, they just don’t seem to have the pain.

And Jim Booth is an exception to those who make their money and leave. He has 10 mining operations, but he’s been committed to staying and helping the region. He partnered with the state to create the Kentucky Coal Academy to recruit and train young miners. In downtown Inez, a community center, a technology center, and nestled in the hills, his own house. He says this is a statement as well. That is a huge house. Do you feel a little weird building a house that big in Inez with that much poverty right up in the hills?

I wanted to show the people that I’m embedded here. This is my home. I’m staying here. It’s made a statement that has caused a lot of people to say I want to do what he’s done.

People like that 19-year-old Jeremy who has his eye on a house too. He’s now been working in the mines for almost a year and tells us he’s having stomach trouble.

My sides been killing me. Hurts real bad. They couldn’t find nothing. That reminds me, I forgot to take that Nexium they prescribed me. Chips, a lot of candy bars, my Red Bull, got to have my cigarettes.

After eight hours at work, Jeremy heads back home. I’ve got to stop and get a Zantac though. I’m about to die.

His pregnant wife asks him to bring home some Mountain Dew.

The lady ordered the Mountain Dew. Take my Rolaids.

It is now spring back in Paintsville, Kentucky. And that football superstar Shawn Grim, has climbed a giant mountain all his own.

Shawn Grim.

Beating the odds, Shawn Grim becomes the first person in his family ever to get a high school diploma. Shawn is on his way up and out because Pikeville College, about an hour from his home, has awarded him a football scholarship if he gets that surgery on his damaged knee. Complete with tempting prescription painkillers, his mother Tina.

OK. It would be $150 for these 30. If I wanted to sell, I could get rid of it today. But my son is more important than a dollar.

As we said, it’s a big achievement for Shawn to go to college. His stepbrother, little man, dropped out of school and has two kids. We were in little man’s trailer when Shawn played me that ring tone again. Could I see the dance that you do to Lollipop?

I don’t know the dance.

I bet you do.

Seriously, I don’t. Sorry. I know the song.

But just as Shawn is getting close to going off to his new life, a new blow. Little man’s girlfriend, the mother of his children, says at 3:00 a.m. she found little man and his 15-year-old half sister out in back of the trailer having sex. Shawn’s mother, Tina, called the cops.

Knowing they’re blood related and knowing that that happened. That is really disgusting in my book.

Shawn’s step dad Rick says if little man comes around, he’s ready.

I’d blow his head off his body. I’d shoot my own mother.

The parents are heading out to see their daughter who’s been taken to a social services facility. Later, Tina tells us she too was molested by a family member when she was young. Rick says this kind of thing doesn’t just happen in Appalachia, it’s everywhere.

Well, did you ever hear the old saying, the closer the kin, the deeper in? It doesn’t matter who it is. They lay down. Black, white, crippled, it don’t matter.

In tears, Shawn’s half sister tells their mother that little man gave her pills, or marijuana, or money in exchange for sex. And back home says that wasn’t the first time.

It happens all so fast. You really don’t know what’s going on around you. You just go on all through the days pretending like nothing’s ever happened because you’re so scared.

Little man says he is not guilty. The mother of his children has now recanted her story.

Well, unfortunately Eastern Kentucky has a stereotype of incest, but it’s everywhere. It’s in the whole United States. And we have to be able to make sure and get out that this cycle has to be broken.

For Shawn, anger and embarrassment. In the wake of all this, he goes off to Pikeville College to begin his new life trying to upend all those stereotypes.

Us hillbillies don’t want to do nothing but drink and do drugs the rest of their life? Is that what you are saying? Stereotype?

Arriving at school, it’s clear that he doesn’t have the advantages a lot of the other kids have.

What’s your story, man?

I ain’t got a lot of money.

You ain’t got a lot of money?

What’d you live in back home?

A house.

I slept wherever I fell asleep.

For eight weeks, he goes to football practice where his teammates are now twice his size. He also struggles in the classroom, says he’s feeling overwhelmed. And by the way, his girlfriend from the right side of the tracks has long since broken up with them.

Failing is probably, I guess, the biggest thing to ever scare me. I guess, I’m just going to have to work harder and try harder.

Even with the scholarship, he says he has no money for what other kids can afford supplies, food, fun. After only eight weeks, he loses heart. He drops out and goes back home.

Found out I couldn’t pay for the college, had to come home. No one’s perfect.

Winter is coming, the family needs coal. So Shawn heads out for one of those illegal scavenging trips on the highway wall on route 23. And all the people whizzing by have no idea that the kid digging coal on the side of the road was once the hope and hero of Appalachian football. Now, on the side of the highway, nothing around the bend. Ask mountain people why they don’t just leave these isolating hills, and they’ll tell you once Appalachia’s in your blood, it’s in your blood forever.

I love the voices. Every person, every challenge seems to be remembered in some story in some way to make people feel better about who they are.

When the banking industry melts down, it’s like, oh no, we have a structural problem. When folks in Appalachia or the inner city are poor, well, it’s their fault. You know, why don’t they pull themselves up by their bootstraps? Dee Davis says, what if all these kids could work with computers at home and some of the jobs that do administration is planning could come to this region? Bobby Fletcher is the principal of a local middle school.

A lot of people look at Appalachia and they say we don’t value education. Well, that’s not the case.

If your only achievable goal was working a fast food restaurant or at a box store, how much time would you spend in high school?

If kids in India and Indonesia can compete, I think our kids can compete. I think it’s just changing the contours of our expectations and maybe the geography of our heart.

All to help someone like 12-year-old Erica. When we last saw her, her mother still struggling with addiction, the house where they have been living burned, and they had to move out. But once more, Erica was refusing to give up hope.

It’s just a wake-up call from God saying it’s a new start.

And what about the 19-year-old coal miner Jeremy? With the help of a housing agency that works with miners, he got a loan and bought his first house for the family he loves. $80,000, three bedrooms, 960 square feet.

I’m taking a magic marker and put sold.


As for the 12-year-old Courtney and her mom Angel, well, after all the miles Angel walked to class for that diploma.

This is my GED that I worked my butt off for. I was so happy, I did a happy dance, you know, all that.

And now, maybe the possibility of a job, maybe some new teeth. And even though from time to time food is still scarce, Angel and her boyfriend found a rundown house to rent for $400 a month if they’ll fix it up.

This is my kitchen where I cook for my family, you know?

While on the porch, Angel’s mother Dinah still prays for her family to make it. Singing an old song, dreaming of a new day.

There’s a lot left to fight for, a lot left worth fighting for.

And before we leave you tonight, one more note about one of the kids you met. Shawn Grim, our football star, he went to Nashville to try to find work, but couldn’t. So tonight, he’s back up in the hills still dreaming of a job and wishing there were some way he could make it through college and maybe coach kids like him. On our web site at ABCNews.com you can find organizations that help the tens of thousands of kids in this part of Appalachia. And we want to know more of what you think. I’m Diane Sawyer. From all of us at 20/20 and ABC News, goodnight.

You’ll remember up the twisting roads in the mountains at Calf Creek, Kentucky, 12-year-old Courtney and her sister 11-year-old Mary told us a secret about their mom.

Can I be honest? Our mommy used to be hooked on drugs, and we did not like it one bit.

12 people at grandma’s house, clothes stuffed under the bed. Courtney’s dream, boots like the ones with little fake fur you see on Hannah Montana and maybe a home of their own.

We’re not like other people. We can’t afford food after food after food.

Courtney’s mother Angel lost her teeth years ago. She’s 30 years old. And we saw her make the trek to the GED class in the center of town. Her walk, eight miles each way. After all those hours of walking, she did it.

This is my GED that I worked my butt off for.

Angel also found a rundown house to rent for $400 a month if she’ll fix it up.

This is my kitchen where I cook for my family. You know?

And what’s happened in the life of this family tonight? Well, you sent word you wanted to help with some of the shortages in daily life. Also Courtney learned, thanks to a family in California, she and her sisters are getting those Hannah Montana boots. And a surprise for Angel. Dentist Dr. Edwin Smith is giving her a new set of teeth for free.

I’ve waited a long, long time for this.

You’ll remember Dr. Smith, one of the dentists in the mountains using his own money to help kids suffering from what dentists here call Mountain Dew mouth. Well, after our report, the Pepsi company, which makes Mountain Dew, says the company is ready to work with Dr. smith on nutritional education, recruiting more dentists, and they’re going to give him a second, brand new mobile dental clinic van. And last week, you also reached out to someone else. Erica Floyd who spent her childhood trying to save her mother. Five years ago, WYMT Mountain News captured a tiny Erica, her mother in jail for the fourth DUI.

She drinks sometimes, but that’s not right for me. But I love her.

Erica then and now, 11 years old, still trying to help the mother battling addiction to Lortab and OxyContin.

I’m sorry you’ve had to go through this.

It’s OK.

No, it’s not OK.

We told you about the fire that burned their house and how Erica could be seen walking alone through her town. Do you know what kind of drugs she was doing? Did you see her?

No, she wouldn’t let me see her. But I knew it was happening.

How did you know?

She had that look in her eyes when she lied to me.

Well, as of this week, Erica has a new tutor to help her with her school work, and Appalachian neighbors have offered to replace her bedroom furniture. A note too about 19-year-old Jeremy who was shoveling coal six days a week who had one child, another on the way. Well, this week, a surprise baby gift from a viewer.

They’re giving us a baby shower. We appreciate it. Jeremy tells us he’s feeling better and trying to drink less soda pop. And finally last Friday night, you met Shawn Grim the football superstar of the mountain. Only five foot seven inches tall, 170 pounds but the will of a lion. And as college recruiters watched, he played for his future. He played for his life. At the same time, the golden pride of Appalachia was sleeping in a truck.

These are all my clothes for school in my truck. My toothpaste and toothbrush are in my glove box.

He was trying to fight the undertow of his family in the trailers in the hills, poverty, alcohol, the ground carpeted with litter, dirty diapers.

I want to make everybody happy that I’m actually trying something and doing something with my life. And I don’t want to mess up.

We watch Shawn’s victories, the first in his family to graduate high school. And we also saw his crushing defeat. On a college football scholarship, he struggled in the classroom. He lost heart because he didn’t even have money for the little things other kids took for granted. After only eight weeks, he dropped out. When we left him, winter was closing in, nothing on the horizon. But what a difference a week makes. After our reports, several Kentucky colleges reached out offering scholarships, help with school work, and there’s money to give him some of what other students have. Tonight, we can tell you Shawn has chosen the respected Union College in Kentucky. His dorm room is ready, he starts school Monday.

I hope that I made the right decision, and I appreciate everything everybody’s helped me do so far.

He calls it all his amazing second chance at his dreams. And what about all the leaders who love Kentucky? We asked them to answer your question, what will help? Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear watched our report and told us the state will get three billion dollars from the President’s stimulus package.

We’re getting money to build roads and bridges. And part of that’s going to be done in Eastern Kentucky. There’s money in there for water and sewer projects. And that’s in demand in Eastern Kentucky.

Another leader, a lawyer, says the stimulus money for train improvements is made for the skills of the mountain.

We have hundreds and hundreds of men and women who could be the welders, be the mechanics, be the tradesmen. They could build that equipment.

Everyone talked to us about green jobs to replace the options of Walmart, fast food, and the drug trade. And also, what about the kids each getting computers so that they could show the kids of India what competition is like?

The United States was once the most wired country. Now it’s 15th. And the reason it slipped is that we kind of abandoned rural communities.

And health care, a growth industry in the country, could be one here too. Remember 81-year-old Eula Hall who’s been driving the sick out of the hills and into her clinic for 36 years?

I wish there was a clinic like ours in every county in Appalachia so people would get the kind of health care they need and deserve.

There is a real shortage of philanthropy in rural America. And yet, it’s one of the places that needs philanthropy the most. And most of all, these Kentuckians say, the beauty of the mountains is calling to all of us to restart that conversation that began more than 40 years ago.

There are ways to think about the future in the mountains in different kinds of ways than we’ve thought about in the past. We just need to be willing to dream.

Calculate your order
Pages (275 words)
Standard price: $0.00
Client Reviews
Our Guarantees
100% Confidentiality
Information about customers is confidential and never disclosed to third parties.
Original Writing
We complete all papers from scratch. You can get a plagiarism report.
Timely Delivery
No missed deadlines – 97% of assignments are completed in time.
Money Back
If you're confident that a writer didn't follow your order details, ask for a refund.

Calculate the price of your order

You will get a personal manager and a discount.
We'll send you the first draft for approval by at
Total price:
Power up Your Academic Success with the
Team of Professionals. We’ve Got Your Back.
Power up Your Study Success with Experts We’ve Got Your Back.

Contact Us on WhatsApp

× How can I help you?