Detroit firefighter captures unique images of city’s forgotten neighborhoods

Firefighter and photographer Shane Klug. Photos by Steve Neavling
Firefighter and photographer Shane Klug. Photos by Steve Neavling

Ever wonder what a firefighter sees on a typical day in some of Detroit’s most challenged neighborhoods?

Firefighter Shane Klug has been snapping photos while on the job and sharing the captivating images on Instagram at @dfdlad26. The images are poignant and engaging, offering an unadulterated glimpse into neglected, forgotten neighborhoods of Detroit.

555 Photo Gallery

The images captured the attention of the nonprofit 555 Gallery in Detroit, which recently exhibited dozens of Klug’s photos.
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“They’re shocking,” Michael Bradley told me at the gallery, gazing at an image of a graffiti-tagged home that had been burned out. “It’s just staggering to see this level of decay and abandonment in an American city.”

Klug, who works with Ladder #26 on the west side, is modest about his work.

“I don’t consider myself a photographer,” he said. “I just want to show people what it’s like out here.”
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Detroit firefighters sees some of the worst of the city – areas riddled with blight and neglected by city services. 

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Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.