Wendi on Illinois Circle, Pigeon Hill, 1990

“I was only four when I saw my first stabbing—a drug deal gone bad. I knew I had to be tough just to survive on Pigeon Hill. My mom was a nurse but she got into drugs and left when I was nine. Odds were I’d have a kid by the time I was fifteen, like many of my friends. But I didn’t want that—I wanted to get off the Hill.”

Wendi at Lyons Raceway, 2013

“I live out in the country with my husband, Luke, and sometimes my daughter. She has a more protected childhood than I did. I’m employed as a Water Quality Engineer at the Indiana American Water Plant in Terre Haute—it’s a 54.4 mile commute from home to work each way. I’ve taken up drag racing on the weekends in a 1973 Plymouth Scamp that Luke modified for me.”