IT'S a long way - in distance and time - from the coal mines of Eastern Ohio to the International Photography Hall of Fame in St. Louis, Mo.
For a Martins Ferry man, that "journey" hasn't always been easy although there also have been tremendous achievements along the way.
Jay Stock, now a master photographer whose work now is included in the permanent collection at the International Photography HofF, began his photographic efforts with his family's Kodak Brownie camera when he was a Dillonvale teenager.
His interest in photography deepened during World War II. After that war, a veteran's bonus and the GI Bill of Rights helped him to gain more photographic knowledge.
After the war, he worked as a coal miner and on the railroad. It was during those 14 years that he began his photography business.
Stock, whose honors have been many, once had to sell his blood if he wanted something extra while he was attending a school of photography in Connecticut. He also couldn't get home for Christmas with his wife and daughters because he lacked bus fare.
His wife, Julia, now deceased, helped him to establish his photography business.
(In addition to her other efforts in this regard, she must have been an adaptive individual as their living room was his studio, and their kitchen was a darkroom.)
STOCK'S success story is well-known - he has been praised by many for his creativity, imagination and talent.
The master photographer, who has photographed people on five continents, was the first to exhibit his work in the U.S. Capitol. His photo collections are in fine arts museums and universities in varied locations.
One of the few living members of the Photographic Hall of Fame, he also received the American Society of Professional Photographers International Award given "in recognition of that individual or corporation whose life's work has made the greatest contribution to the field of professional photography on the international, historical and professional levels."
Stock has participated in a variety of benefits to help others.
HIS 90th birthday anniversary will be celebrated this week, and he has plans for the future to photograph the Amish in Pennsylvania.
It's evident Stock doesn't lack enthusiasm and endurance.