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Ferguson residents rebuilding in aftermath of unrest

It was a calm day in Ferguson Monday, opposite of what we saw there and all of St. Louis County a year ago.

Thousands from around the world gathered to hear St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch say a grand jury would not charge former Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for killing Michael Brown, Jr.

Many will remember the images of buildings burning here on November 24, 2014.

One year later, people are scarce on the sidewalk.
But some are trying to add to what was lost.

Rachel Asen works smaller.

“This scale is, is not what I’m used to.”

Asen, an artist living in St. Louis, watched as civil unrest grew, and sometimes exploded throughout the city.
She said she started writing for a group of people at her church, when an image popped in her head.

“Seeing the media coverage and just, everybody’s emotion, I guess the word ‘broken’ just resonated with me.”

So the post-card sized work tried to capture a monumental idea.

“Faith brings us together. And I think in Ferguson, faith was a huge part of that. I think the faith community really stepped up. I think when someone has faith, it’s easier to stomach injustice.”

That’s when others, including Ferguson co-chair Reverend Starksy Wilson and the St. Louis history museum, passed her work along to others.

Her neighbor, Andy Cross, convinced her to bring the work to the street across from the Ferguson Police Department.

“It belongs, it belongs to everybody.”

“We need to know we’re not alone, and that there are other people that feel how we feel and can help us through it.”

Asen said she painted the two people in different shades and that it would take people of all colors to find a way to end all injustices and pain.

The City of Ferguson still faces a federal wrongful death lawsuit from the Brown family.

Attorneys for the city, Darren Wilson and the Brown family did not respond to our requests for comment on the matter.

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