UpTown Funk vs. Downtown Manhattan as the JCWWP Beat Goes on…

UpTown Funk vs. Downtown Manhattan

as the JCWWP Beat Goes On

Today, I did a cameo appearance to see first hand what Darrell, Ms. Hall, Ms. Cleveland and the HW Volunteers were stirring up at the first Justin Carr Dare to Dream Workshop. Upon arrival, I smiled when I noticed the big entry sign that hugged the wall—inviting all students to sign up for this special day. I also had a flashback moment to the first time I took Justin to this campus (in the summer of 2012)—when he was scouting out a school to adopt…


As the session began, Darrell spoke to the students about Justin—who he was, and what he stood for. He also spoke about the JCWWP mission—and how we are all working hard to realize Justin’s dreams— for world peace. Darrell told the students that by including someone in their circle, or even helping someone out are indeed a step in the right direction.


Ms. Hall then did her magic as she demonstrated today’s exercise of “drawing to music”. They showed Justin’s that drawing  he did in 10th grade as an example




I smiled as she moved her petite body from side to side dancing to the beat of Bruno Mars’ “UpTown Funk”. With a pastel pencil in one hand and paper in the other, she made markings that paralleled the sounds beating from the boom box. Subsequently, the first patch of students eagerly started their project while the 7th and 8th graders set out to increase their math skills with tutoring with the high school volunteers. The students and volunteers produced some beautiful pieces of art.




A few minutes later, as I stepped outside, I heard my name being called out. At first I did not recognize the woman behind the stylish dark shades, but after she revealed her sparkling eyes, I realized it was a family friend, Jackie Jackson. She said she was just doing a favor for a friend and picking up her grandchildren. This was  her first time ever setting foot on this campus. Ironically, Jackie had three children who graduated from HW.  She said  she saw the  welcoming sign for the “ Justin Carr workshop when she entered the campus, and she thought to herself that “ Justin’s beautiful spirit” is everywhere. She had no idea she was going to see me.

A moment later, Angie Dave’s who is a consistent volunteer with the program, came out and I introduced her to Jackie. Then it dawned on me that they shared many dear friends in common. Angie went on to say that her sister Cathy Dave’s attended the Westlake School for Girls. Within seconds from mentioning “Cathy’s” name, I got a text message from Cathy—who lives ALL the way in NYC. At first I could not decipher the message because it came in three “out of order “messages (Cathy must have a Blackberry phone and not an Apple lol) Then, I had to call her for clarity because we all could not believe that we had JUST mentioned her name. I quickly dialed her number. Before I could get a word out, she blurted: “ Sue, you are not going to believe this. I was just walking Downtown Manhattan on 8th Avenue in New York sporting my JCWWP T- shirt. I usually do not pay attention to people on the streets in the city, but I did however notice two women who were lunching on an outdoor patio, and motioning me to come over.” They said: “Where did you get that shirt?’”Cathy explained that the Carr family are dear, dear friends.” Then they proceeded to tell her that they were from California, worked at Harvard Westlake and knew Justin and our family well. They were charged up with full-blown excitement. Turned out one of the lady’s  was Cheri Gaulke , the Upper School Visual Arts Department Head.

Before I ended my call with Cathy she said: “ Sue, it was such a glorious day in the city. To hear the joy in their voices and to witness the pure smiles on their faces  has they spoke compassionately about Justin, made my day. I am so grateful that Justin is so ever present, and remains with us… as he will forever walk with us and travel in our hearts !  I carry Justin with me always.”

Thank you Volunteers as the BEAT goes on all for JCWWP!!!!

Angie Daves Moving to the Beat of JCWWP
Angie Daves Moving to the Beat of JCWWP

I can’t make this up!!!!!!!







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