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Gary: The city America - and Donald Trump - left behind

Ahead of Friday's presidential inauguration, ITV News has travelled across the US to find out Americans' hopes and fears of a Donald Trump presidency.

Gary, Indiana is a cautionary tale for Americans placing their absolute faith in the man about to be sworn in as the 45th president of the United States.

Donald Trump vowed to make the down-on-its-luck former steel city great again during his bid to win one of two casino licences in 1994.

The New York mogul wooed local and state officials with a bold pledge to transform it into the "Hollywood of the midwest".

He promised to pour millions into its shattered economy, renovate the crumbling hotel opposite city hall and create well-paid jobs for its mostly black population.

Trump even suggested he could lure Michael Jackson back to his birthplace to perform.

Star-struck gaming officials were seduced by the billionaire's pitch and took a gamble on him.

Gary is the hometown of Michael Jackson, whom Trump promised to bring back to the suffering city. Credit: ITV News

"We had visions of grandeur that Trump would do wonderful, exciting things," explains Chuck Hughes, a former city councilman who was part of the team negotiating with Trump.

"But he did not fulfill those promises."

Trump Princess, his riverboat casino, generated some crucial revenue for the poverty-stricken city for a short period.

But the crumbling hotel crumbled further; promises to Gary's poor residents never materialised and the King of Pop never did have his homecoming.

Trump, saddled with debt from his other business ventures, sold up in 2005 and his brand soon vanished from Gary.

Streets in Gary are blighted by the sight of dilapidated homes and shops. Credit: ITV News

The billionaire insists he was good for Gary. Most here disagree; they accuse Trump of earning as much as he could for himself before abandoning ship.

Eleven years on, and with Trump about to assume office as the most powerful man in the world, the city remains in deep economic distress.

Streets are blighted by the sight of dilapidated homes and abandoned, boarded-up shops - it feels almost apocalyptic to drive through.

But Mr Hughes, who still desperately tries to attract business to the city, is not bitter towards the incoming president.

He believes Trump has the opportunity to redeem himself, citing his famous "What do you have to lose?" campaign pitch to black voters.

"President Trump can rewrite this cautionary tale - he owes it to Gary and the whole of the United States."