Reminder: I’m happy to share with you a personal project that I am just beginning to work on. I’m photographing (as well as will be photographing) individuals who have faced some kind of personal challenge but, despite their respective situations, chose to persevere through the experience.
Over the coming weeks, I hope to feature many more of these so if you know someone who would be a wonderful and willing subject, please reach out through my website by clicking here.
I must apologize for not sharing this post earlier. I had COVID-19 in early February and it threw a wrench in my schedule but I’m happy to share this post, finally!
We Las Vegans will never forget October 1st, 2017. The massacre at Mandalay Bay that occurred that night gained the attention of the entire country. 58 lives were taken and hundreds more suffered wounds. The painful effects of that night echoed (and still do) through the lives of anyone present there that night as well as their friends and families. Certainly, thousands of people were directly impacted due to the horrific circumstances of that night.
But is sorrow and pain all that remains now? Sadly, for some it very well may be, but for two friends of mine that lost their oldest son that night at the Route 91 festival, they have taken their struggles from it and decided to find ways to help others while while they themselves continue to cope with the loss of their son, Quinton Robbins. Please enjoy their input!
What motivated you to push through more difficult times?
The only thing that motivates you at the time, is your other children. We tried to give them the time and space they needed, but we also wanted them to know, we couldn’t sit in the house and cry all day. We needed to try our best to move forward. We took a lot of trips together as a family afterwards to see if we could find a little bit of happiness.
Has your experience given you deeper empathy for others? If so, how?
It has definitely given us more empathy for sure, but at the same time, it’s hard for us to hear people complain about their kids and how their kids are driving them crazy, or they wish they could take even an hour for themselves. What we wouldn’t give to be with Quinton for another hour!
What kinds of words of encouragement can you give others who are experiencing personal difficulties?
I’m not sure we are quite there yet to give any kind of words of encouragement. You feel like you’re getting better and you’ve got this, and then it hits you again. I will say, if not for our faith, we would all still be sitting in the house sobbing and depressed. It helps us all knowing that we will see Quinton again and that as hard as it is for us, he is truly happy.
During your challenges, how appreciative are you of your true friends and family who were there for you?
We definitely found out who are true friends and family were. We lost a lot of good friends because they didn’t know how to act or what to say around us anymore. But people you least expected are now some of our closest friends. We had the family we are closest to never leave our side and for that we are forever grateful!! After the shooting happened there was a go fund me set up for the families. We could not even imagine taking that money and using it on ourselves, so we decided to start a non profit called “Quinton Robbins Play it Forward Foundation” We provide scholarships to students at the Jr High and High School, Quinton attended and We also sponsor organized sports in the Henderson/Las Vegas area which has been so amazing and healing for us.
I very much appreciate Joe and Tracey taking the time to answer my questions and for having me photograph them! Be sure to check out The Quinton Robbins Play It Forward Foundation by going to their Facebook page. Click here.