Laid off roughneck misses life in the Bakken oil fields

After making a good living working on an oil rig, John Desjarlais found himself among thousands of roughnecks let go in North Dakota after the fall in global oil prices shut down nearly half of North Dakota’s rigs.

As a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indian tribe, Desjarlais returned home to a reservation with 69 percent unemployment. Now he lives on unemployment benefits, trying to make ends meet while he waits for the call to return to the rig and the lifestyle he grew to love.

Students from Turtle Mountain Community High School in Belcourt, North Dakota helped produce this video.