MPW.65 / Trenton 17 Days at Bottom by Kristen Zeis
Photographer
Kristen Zeis Columbia, Missouri
Team Lee

Story Summary

On Tuesday, Jacky Kennedy, 37, of Trenton, walked out of the Grundy County jail. He had spent his last 17 days there on a drug-related charge.

“It was rough there for a while, I sure hope I found my bottom.”

Those 17 days were a wake up call for Kennedy to commit to staying off drugs, out of trouble and getting his life back on track.

First on his list: to regain custody of his two children.

The signs of his children Jessika, 8, and Jack, 5, linger inside the home, but it remains quiet and empty of laughter.

A patch of dead grass holds a spot where the swimming pool once was, a mangled Barbie sits misplaced on a shelf on the deck. Inside the house, children’s drawings line the walls. An empty turquoise chair sits empty by the front window.

These constant reminders are motivation for Jacky Kennedy to continue in his new direction and get his children back at home where they belong, “I should have done better, and I’m going to do better,” said Kennedy. “It’s day by day. You can’t focus any more than day by day.”