WAUKESHA, Wis. — Amid the sadness and the tragedy in Waukesha, there are inspiring stories of people wanting to help and give. The resilience of the community, the generous spirit, and the ability to come together are just a few of the meanings to Waukesha Strong.
Ever since the tragic Christmas Parade massacre, people have been doing whatever they can to help the victims, their families, and the community heal.
It an inspiring display of generosity, more than $1 million has been donated to the United for Waukesha Community Fund. Money has come from all 50 states including places as far away as Brazil, Australia, and China. This all happened in less than 48 hours.
On Wednesday, students and teachers from Catholic Memorial High School in Waukesha participated in a day of community service. Students made blankets, supply bags, prepped food, and more. All of this benefited various organizations around the city and specifically for the victims.
"When one of us is hurt, when something happens here, we take care of one another. We gather. We watch out for those. We do what we can do to give back," Cindi Petre, the campus minister at Catholic Memorial said.
Students even wrote a message to their neighbor, St. Mary's Catholic School. It said "We love you." Multiple students from that school are still in the hospital.
"I think that after what happened, we are all coming together as a community and trying to provide and do what we can and help everyone else. And I think it's just showing love and care. And I think that's really good for everyone just to know a lot of people do care," John Basarich, a sophomore at Catholic Memorial said.
Across town on Wednesday, the Humane Animal Welfare Society of Waukesha County, anyone could come in for some pet therapy.
“Animals have this way of being our comfort they are so good at just soaking up you know anything that we are feeling and helping us smile.”
Dozens of children, teens, and adults showed up to get some licks on the face and hand out a couple of treats.
“When everybody does a little bit to help support the community we become so much stronger that way and this is our way of helping out.”
The Waukesha community is coming together in the most crucial time. There are more ways that people can support the community. There are tons of GoFundMe's for the victims, Waukesha Strong shirts, and the United for Waukesha Community Fund.
So what does it mean to be Waukesha Strong? It means helping your community in the time of crisis. It means lending your neighbor a hand. It means recognizing it's okay to not be okay. It means being confident in the face of the worst adversity. It means so much more, but most of all it means love. Love for the City of Waukesha, the people of Waukesha, and everything in Waukesha.
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