What happened when Walmart left

In West Virginia, the people of McDowell County recently lost their biggest employer – the local Walmart store. The story is bleak.

For Dan Phillips, Walmart was a way of coping with bereavement after his wife died a few years ago. “If you were lonely and had nothing to do, you’d go to Walmart to talk to folk. It was a great social network. […] Now it’s hard to keep track of people, there’s no other place like it where you can stand and chat.”

“I went to Walmart for the walk,” she says. “I went early and I got a cart and I walked all over the store. I loved walking around it. I would walk and talk, talk and walk. I could walk the store all day.”

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