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Articles by Seth Lewis

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In a place as small as Delta, a western Colorado coal-mining town of 7,000, it wasn't hard for Keith Lucy to notice the startling number of teen pregnancies.

By 1995, Lucy had seen enough. Resolved to do something, he organized a coalition of city and health officials, educators, and ministers to establish Abstinence Awareness Week — which, conveniently, came the week before the high school prom.

Their first move: Above the town's busiest street, a yellow banner touting "Save Sex" went up — and so did the eyebrows.

"Initially, I think it had a bit of a shock effect," Lucy told in mid-June. "You don't normally see that across Main Street."

But then, Delta was hardly typical by Colorado standards. In the town and the rest of Delta County, nearly one in ten babies belonged to teen moms — a number double the state average.

So the locals — from school nurses to bu...