Framework

Capturing the world through photography, video and multimedia

At dawn, Luis Luna waits outside the warehouse where he works. His minimum wage job barely pays his rent, but it provides some stability in a country where he is locked out of most job opportunities.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

Luis Luna works in a used clothing warehouse in the neighborhood where he sold chocolates as a child. The owner remembered him and gave him a job.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

Luis Luna trades text messages to set up a basketball game after work. The cellphone was given to him by a friend after he returned penniless to Southern California.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

Luis Luna, right, and his close friend Julio Cortez shoot baskets at a school in South Gate, a suburb of Los Angeles. Cortez was one of several U.S.-born friends who helped Luna when he was living on the streets of Mexico.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

Luis Luna lives in this converted two-car garage. Comparing the studio apartment to his homeless months in Mexico. he said: "I don't have to sleep in the streets no more. I can actually close my eyes and sleep until I wake up knowing that I'm going to be alive."

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

Luis Luna spent his childhood walking the streets of Los Angeles selling chocolates. Brought from Mexico by his mother when he was 3, he says the U.S. is the only country he knows. "I feel like an American," he says.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

Luis Luna takes a placement exam in an effort to earn his high school diploma. He was deported before he could graduate from high school.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

Luis Luna talks to students at South Junior High School in Anaheim about his harrowing attempts to cross the Arizona desert and return home. "They told me I was ready to die. I couldn't breath. I had a blank stare. The coyote said, 'I've seen this before, he's not going to make it .' "

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

More galleries on Framework

return to gallery

Return to Southern California

Pictures in the News | Aug. 7, 2014

In Thursday's Pictures in the News, Olympic champion swimmer Michael Phelps leaps off the blocks at the Phillips 66 U.S. Swimming National Championships in Irvine on Wednesday. ...   View Post»

   

Return to Southern California

Pictures in the News | Nov. 12, 2013

In Tuesday's Pictures in the News a candlelight vigil for Elawnza Peebles, 14, who was fatally shot as he was walking home in Los Angeles. Tacloban, Philippines: Super...   View Post»

   

Return to Southern California

Mardi Gras 2013 shifts into high gear with Fat Tuesday in New Orleans

Overcast skies and the threat of rain couldn't dampen the revelry of Mardi Gras in New Orleans as parades took to the streets Tuesday, showering costumed merrymakers with...   View Post»

   

Return to Southern California

Pictures in the News | May 2, 2012

Wednesday's Pictures in the News begins in Kentucky, where Kentucky Derby entrant Daddy Nose Best grazes after a morning workout at Churchill Downs. “The Run for the Roses”...   View Post»

   

Homeless vacate their camps near the Hollywood Bowl

Homeless rousted from their camps near Hollywood Bowl

By Sam Quinones Jay, a homeless man sleeping near a 101 Freeway onramp in Hollywood, awoke to the voices of police Friday morning. Los Angeles Police Department officers...   View Post»

   

Return to Southern California

Pictures in the News | March 2, 2012

Friday's Pictures in the News begins in Europe, where a release of chemicals from a fire turned a stream bright green. Police report that the chemicals were harmless. In Greece,...   View Post»

   

Return to Southern California

Pictures in the News | February 15, 2012

Wednesday's Pictures in the News begins in Honduras, where a fire at a prison gas killed at least 272 trapped inmates, and perhaps more than 300, in scenes one official...   View Post»

   

Return to Southern California

Pictures in the News | Nov. 12, 2010

We start Friday's Pictures in the News with a striking image of a Nepalese Hindu devotee during the Chhath festival in Kathmandu. During the Chhath festival, rituals are...   View Post»

   

Return to Southern California

Pictures in the News | Nov. 10, 2010

As always, today's Pictures in the News gallery brings us some of the best images captured by photographers from around the world. We're in Afghanistan, Canada, China, Britain,...   View Post»

   

Return to Southern California

The Week in Pictures | Sept. 20-26, 2010

Each week we bring you the best images from around the world in our Week in Pictures photo gallery. We have images from Fashion Week in Milan, Madrid and London; children...   View Post»

Return to Southern California

Luis Luna returned to his hometown of South Gate in May. His arms and legs were scraped raw from cactus needles and his eyes kept blinking, still starved of moisture from his eight-day journey through the Arizona desert the week before. Read Story

5 Comments

  1. December 27, 2012, 6:28 am

    That's too bad Luis but a lot of folks are waiting. Get in line!

    By: guest@roadrunner.com
  2. January 3, 2013, 10:53 pm

    It was a great but risky journey… I wish to learn abour Luis .. is he well now?

  3. August 7, 2013, 9:39 am

    Great advice, Guest. Coincidentally, what's the longest you've ever waited for a place to sleep that wasn't the street?

    By: Brian
  4. September 18, 2014, 11:17 pm

    What is now California was first settled by various Native American tribes before being explored by a number of European expeditions throughout .

    By: wordpress
  5. December 28, 2014, 6:27 am

    Really nice shots!!

    By: masevilla

Add a comment or a question.

If you are under 13 years of age you may read this message board, but you may not participate. Here are the full legal terms you agree to by using this comment form.

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until they've been approved.

Required

Required, will not be published