Series: Hope and Struggle in America

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Staff writer P.J. Huffstutter and photographer Genaro Molina are traveling the country, chronicling the hopes and struggles of Americans during this time of economic hardship.

  • Making sure pets aren't forgotten

    Joni Taylor learned the hard way that pets suffer during hard times too. Now she's opened an Oregon food bank for the four-legged.

  • Bringing the cobbler the tired, weary, worn

    Business is up at a downtown Manhattan shoe repair. The out-of-work and penny-pinching bankers and brokers are lining up to save their old soles.

  • For a psychic, bad news is big business

    But telling clients that they're going to lose a job can stress out even the most prescient.

  • Once on TV, now just another gamer

    Yazan Ammari, 23, earned nearly a quarter of a million dollars as a professional video-game player. Now he's back at Mom and Dad's.

  • The unclaimed ashes of hard times

    The funeral director knows: Good times mean fancy services; bad times mean unclaimed remains. So some of the dead stay with him, near those from other decades, other bad times.