Remembering Barbara Jean by Patrick Presby of Blunt Youth Radio
The Blunt Youth Radio Project in Portland, Maine also includes a program at the Long Creek Youth Development Center, a juvenile detention facility. This program helps with literacy skills, computer skills, and is also– shhh!– a fun extracurricular for the students. The features are usually personal essays geared toward helping the writers in their rehabilitation, or they cover an aspect of detained life. One of the most famous Long Creek stories, "What's In the Food?" was actually featured on This American Life.
This essay is by Patrick Presby.Â Pat remembers his step-mother, Barbara Jean, from the first time they met, to the last time he saw her. Though the 11 years in between were sometimes hard for Patrick – including a turn to juvenile crime – he remembers the care she gave him, and her incredible capacity to forgive.
Today, Patrick is doing well and is a proud father to his son.Â He lives in Gray, Maine. Read a really nice profile about him and other students doing work in the Dominican Republic in the Portland Press Herald, where the above photo is from.Â Listen to some more work by Long Creek kids on PRX.