Can’t Crush Their Spirit: Art Club Mural Vandalized


Mika Carreon

Art Club students fixing the mural.

Over the past year, the RMHS Art Club worked extremely hard to create a magnificent mural on the walls of the Kirchhoff underpass. It was finally finished this past July. When news broke that the mural had been vandalized, students and teachers were heartbroken alike. 

“When I heard that the mural was vandalized, I was in a state of denial that soon became anger. It felt like all the work we put into the mural sank down the drain,” sophomore Mikaela Carreon said. All the students put so much effort into creating this art piece, a permanent display of their creativity and talent. Their own mark on the town of Rolling Meadows. The vandalism so blatantly disrespected these students, who gave the mural their all. 

“They [students] couldn’t believe someone would carelessly destroy something that clearly took a lot of hard work and talent,” Art Club sponsor, Martha Nava, said. “Here was something so beautifully done and a gift to the park district—it was hard to imagine how someone could damage somebody else’s art like that and not think about the consequences.” It truly is a punch in the face to the hardworking students who created that mural. As Nava said, how could someone damage someone else’s art like that?

“For me, the mural was like a dream come true,” senior Jessica Hernandez said, “being able to spread art throughout the town was amazing.” Students like Hernandez and Carreon were given the opportunity to make their own art piece in the town of Rolling Meadows. The mural meant so much to them, and it is truly insulting that someone would ruin it.

Luckily, the art club didn’t let that crush their spirit. 

“I wanted to empower my students to take back our mural and fix it as soon as we were able,” Nava said. Not long after the vandalism was realized, the students were back at the underpass fixing their work. Although the initial discovery was disheartening, students, staff, and the community wasted no time in saving that mural.

Looking back, Nava believes the vandalism has made the whole project an even more meaningful experience. The students fought hard, never letting the destruction ruin their spirit. 

“There is always a way forward,” Nava said, “there is more good than bad in this world and we need to remember that people want to be a part of that ‘something good,’ we just have to invite them along.”