Michael Hill's Story

Michael Hill was raised in an urban setting,

where his father had once been a drug

addict and his mother was imprisoned for

theft, drug dealing and murder. He was sent

by Juvenile Court to a strictly supervised

group home in Boonville, California, for 18

months. While there, he excelled in all subjects at the racially mixed Anderson Valley High School. He starred

in football, played on the basketball team, ran track and fell in love with Scarlet Meyer. He was destined for

college.  Within a very short period of time, Michael let his defenses down…. because he could. This pastoral

place, the group support he had from school friends, his group home and his girl friend, Scarlet, inspired hope

for a promising future.

One weekend, Michael decided to visit his family and friends in the Bayview district, San Francisco. He missed

being with them. He visited the Big Block gang members without Scarlet, as he didn’t want to expose her to their environment. While with Big Block gang members on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, 18 year old Michael Hill was shot

in the head at point-blank range by rivals. Should he have stayed on one side of that white picket fence where

sheep and wildlife, Scarlet, friends and college offered a promising future? Though I haven’t met him, I mourn

the loss of someone who, like many others in his situation, died too young.  I wish violent outcomes like this

weren’t shared by so many.


Michael Hill


30" x 24" $1,900.00

The Color of Black and White:

Portraits and Figures