Helping Heal Ferguson


Chistina Neuwirth, Laura Neuwirth, Kayln Neuwirth-Deutsch, Blaine Deutsch and Julia Neuwirth-Deutsch spend a day in Ferguson brightening up the community as they painted four boarded up windows over Thanksgiving break.

Rather than shopping, freshman Kalyn Neuwirth-Deutsch spent Black Friday painting windows in Ferguson and helping brighten the community after the riots on Nov. 24.

“We painted on one of the buildings that was burnt down in the riots and you could see the burn marks, but that didn’t stop me from wanting to help,” Neuwirth-Deutsch said.

Despite wanting nothing more to help, Neuwirth-Deutsch was not sure what she would find when she arrived in Ferguson.

“I was actually really nervous when I first went because of all the bad things I heard on the news; but when I got there I just saw all these families going about their normal day. I got a lot less nervous and scared. I was just really happy to be there,” Neuwirth-Deutsch said.

Neuwirth-Deutsch and her family saw none of the negative feelings that had been displayed in the news about the riots.

“We actually had people who were honking and telling us what a good job we were doing and asking if they could come help,” Neuwirth-Deutsch said.

The Neuwirth-Deutsch family spent the day in Ferguson and painted four boarded up window that had broken during the riots.

“We went to a flower shop and a beauty supply shop to paint. We were actually really excited to find the floral shop because we were happy we got to paint all these pretty flowers and put colors everywhere,” Neuwirth-Deutsch said.

While in Ferguson, Neuwirth-Deutsch discovered the stories of some of the shop owners.

“The lady who ran the floral shop had been working there for 42 years. She was really happy to see us there, brightening her day,” Neuwirth-Deutsch said.

Neuwirth-Deutsch’s favorite part of the experience was the owner’s reaction to their newly painted windows.

“We had been there for an hour or so painting that one window. When she came out she was overjoyed and happy to see all of the work that we did,” Neuwirth-Deutsch said.

Neuwirth-Deutsch encourages others to join in the effort to brighten up Ferguson.

“During the day there was nothing scary there. Everyone was just happy and going about their day. You can go with a group like I might go with my church; or you can go down like I did and paint different boards or even plants flowers somewhere. Just do something to brighten up the community,” Neuwirth-Deutsch said.