CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- People are doing their part to clean up the Queen City after protests turned into violent riots Wednesday night, damaging multiple store fronts as rioters looted businesses.
Local Charlotte contractors had their hands full, as they bashed in windows to board up businesses.
"Right now it's just triage,” said Steve Ranshaw with the Indian Trail Service Company. "Let's get everything safe, let’s get everything boarded up let’s get everything secure, and then later we'll start working on putting everything back together.”
Ranshaw and his crew took the whole day off to help half a dozen businesses pick up the pieces. Downtown people reacted to the damaged as if waking up from a bad dream. Folks took photos on social media, looking at a completely different scene than the Charlotte they’re used to.
Jonathan Lee relived parts of the night through social media, looking at a Facebook video of rioters singling out and closing in on a person in a parking garage.
"I don't understand why it happened you know what the psychology was. It's disgusting,” Lee said. When asked if Lee thought the protesters message gets lost in the violence, he answered “absolutely.”
Some members of the community spent their Thursday doing the little things, like picking up trash, posting inspirational quotes on boarded store fronts, and even giving out cookies.
"It's not about trash it's about spreading positivity,” said Danny Wilson, picking up trash with law enforcement. "If somebody sees us doing this and it makes them think more positively then that's awesome."
They hope these small acts of kindness will remind people why they call this city home.