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Picture Show: The Last Days of General Motors in Moraine, Ohio

On December 23, 2008, the General Motors assembly plant in Moraine, Ohio, shut its doors. It was the last plant in the Dayton, Ohio, area to do so. The photographer Sarina Finkelstein has captured images of the plant and surrounding area, as well as some of the workers who were laid off that day. The..

On December 23, 2008, the General Motors assembly plant in Moraine, Ohio, shut its doors. It was the last plant in the Dayton, Ohio, area to do so. The photographer Sarina Finkelstein has captured images of the plant and surrounding area, as well as some of the workers who were laid off that day. The following photographs offer a glimpse into a new reality for Moraine-one defined by hardship, resilience, and the end of an era.


The Moraine Assembly permanently closed up shop on December 23, 2008.

Jody Jackson, 34, worked in the factory's trim department (on windshield wipers and door frames) for nearly 14 years. From where he stands on his porch, he can see the GM facility.

Jody and his wife, Hilda, have two children and have been together for nine years. They were married four days after the plant closed.

Gate 6 at the plant is one of many no longer in use.

Kate Geiger had been a material group leader in the rail dock for 24 years. Because of her leadership position, she was allowed to take the red tool box home.

The framed photo of the Chevy Trailblazer was part of the GM memorabilia auction for charity during the factory's final days.

Birds fill the air above an outdoor area of the plant.

Shawn "Snake" Berry, 37, was a team leader who began working for GM 14 years ago. His father worked for GM for 36 years before retiring last June.

Snake, shown here with his wife, Tracy, and son, Mason (one of his two), plans to attend the Hobard Institute of Welding to earn welding certification.

The parking lot outside the facility is full of new cars and SUVs that haven't shipped because of the closure.

Teri Jenning, 50, has worked in the motor line assembly for 14 years. She hopes to go back to school to study nursing.

Teri and her husband, David, have two children.

The Upper Deck Tavern is situated just across the street from the plant. Business has slowed considerably since the closure.

Sitting inside the otherwise empty Upper Deck Tavern, Mark Krug, 52, drove a forklift, worked on the muffler line, and performed quality control for 16 years. He hopes to find a job at another GM facility in order to work the necessary two more years to secure his desired retirement plan.See more from Sarina Finkelstein here. A version of this piece appeared on page 60 of GOOD 015: The Transportation Issue.
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via Gage Skidmore / Flickr

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