Sang-Mi and her children live in Rock Hill, a town in the northern reigon of South Carolina, U.S.


In the 70s, Sang-Mi used to say: “I’m definitely marrying an American man.”

Eventually she did find one at the U.S. Army Base and crossed the Pacific. She had a son and a daughter long after she got herself a new name: Nina.


The daughter’s name was Angie. She had a son called Alex and a daughter called Mia. Angie also had a boyfriend,

whom she had been considering marrying with for about 2 years. No one knows who Alex’s father is. Mia sometimes would meet her real father, but she didn’t live with him.


In Rock Hill, houses are quite a way off from one and another, and it takes 10 minutes by walking to go next door. The usual breakfast menu is bacon and egg or a bowl of cereal.

They have pastas, sandwiches or nachos for lunch. And for dinner, the usual selection is McDonald’s or KFC.

Their houses are loaded with guns and bows and their favorite hobby is hunting. 


People from big cities think Rock Hill is a dull and boring place, and they sometimes feel inconvenienced

by the way people live. Nonetheless, it’s only the outsiders who mind.


What can one say about this place, or the people who live here?


All they want is very simple. An American sports car, a small boat so they can go fishing in a lake,

and a TV. A very, very big TV. They wish they had what they wanted.


And what Angie wanted was also so simple. She wanted a marriage. 

That was it.




Angie got married. Before long, she was diagnosed with leukemia. Her husband wanted a divorce.
But death didn’t wait for them. Angie passed away in November of 2013.

Her insurance money was delivered to her husband.

Sang-Mi took Mia away but soon Mia’s real father showed up. A battle over custody ensued.

Mia, who had lost her mother, got a father and grandparents.


March 21th, 2014, Mia’s grandfather Gregory pointed a 9mm pistol to her granddaughter.


Mia bled for about an hour, not knowing what was happening to her. Gregory went to a bank.

He didn't call 911 until over nine hours had passed. He withdrew cash two times within three days.

The amount of money was 40,000 dollars.


In a courtroom, Gregory claimed that he was suffering from mental illness, but Sang-Mi’s family didn’t believe it.

The trial is still on-going.


These photographs are just tiny fraction of what was taken from the year 2008 to 2011. There are little more than 10 people in these photographs. 

Sometimes each subject looks like a letter and when gathered up, they form a sentence.

The sentence was quite normal. It was not the kind of story that surprises or touches people’s hearts.

It was an easily forgettable story, just like the people in the photographs.


What Angie wanted was simple. She wanted a marriage. That was it.

Then what was it that Mia wanted?