Coverage Areas:  National |  South Carolina |  Aiken |  Beaufort |  Charleston |  Columbia |  Greenville |  Myrtle Beach |  Rock Hill
Menu

Coloring book can help domestic violence victims

ORANGEBURG—Nobody knew Lucinda Bernard was involved in an abusive relationship until the night she was killed.

Her family members recall that night, filled with pulsing blue lights as they stood outside her house blocked by crime tape, in utter shock and despair. Bernard’s husband was convicted of her murder, and three children were left without parents.

But from tragedy, the close-knit, devout family was determined to find a positive outcome.

Kim LeDee, an associate art professor at S.C. State University, joined her family members in Texas and Louisiana to figure out a way to help.

Originally, the goal was to support the children, who are now being raised by their grandparents and aunts, and to find a way to pay for Catholic school.

LeDee had long wanted to create a children’s coloring book, and suggested it as a way to pay for tuition. Tiffany Mack, her cousin in Conroy, Texas, where the tragedy occurred, loved the idea. She became a driving force for the sale of the book, along with other outreach projects that blossomed from there.

“It was definitely a family project,” LeDee said. One of her nieces, Laresa Pierre, came up with the title “Color Me Creole.” The children and other family members also contributed to the drawings and storyline.

LeDee said the Creole theme comes from childhood memories of growing up in Louisiana. Her grandfather had a farm in Lebeau, and she spent a lot of time there with her cousins — including Bernard and Mack — playing music, catching crawfish, and swimming in the pond.

“I wanted to honor our family memories and celebrate the past,” LeDee said. “When I think of her, I want to think about the positive things we shared. I know she’s still smiling — looking down and smiling at everyone.”

Funds from the book helped send the children to the parish school of Sacred Heart Church in Conway, where all three, teenagers now, were baptized.

After the coloring book, the family felt compelled to do more.

“I just felt the call to do something about domestic violence,” said Mack. “I just couldn’t see another family go through this — especially the children.”

They started a remembrance Mass and a parish campaign directed at teens to stop abuse at the root. They also created a non-profit website, www.askseekandknock.net, based on the words of Jesus in Mt 7: 7-8, and secured support for it from the Archdiocese of Texas, Mack said.

Over the summer, the coloring book was revised to include a storyline, LeDee said, and they are developing plans for a children’s book. The people Bernard left behind wish they had known about the abuse. They can’t help their loved one now, but hope to reach out to others in the same situation.

Updated Nov. 27: Clarified who came up with the title “Color Me Creole.”






  • Diocesan Events Calendar
    View All Events
    Jul 18 Tekakwitha Conference 2018
    From the Calendar of Native American Ministry
    Jul 27 4th National Black Catholic Women's Conference
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Jul 288:30 am Canon Law Course
    From the Calendar of Diaconate
    Aug 10 Last day of Summer Academy
    From the Calendar of St. Anthony of Padua School Greenville
    8:00 am 2018 Interregional African American Catholic Evangelization Conference
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Aug 17 CORE Training Weekend
    From the Calendar of Youth Ministry
    Aug 1910:00 am Volunteer Workday and Open House Potluck
    From the Calendar of St. John School North Charleston
    Aug 258:00 am Day of Prayer for Deacons
    From the Calendar of Diaconate
    Sep 1 Daniel Rudd Fund Application Closes
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    10:00 am Junta de Equipo Diocesano de Emmaus
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Sep 18 National Association of Black Catholic Administrators Annual Meeting
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Oct 13 Diocesan Evangelization Conference
    From the Calendar of Ethnic Ministries
    Oct 278:00 am Day of Continuing Education for Deacons
    From the Calendar of Diaconate
    Nov 1 Black Catholic History Month
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Nov 1010:00 am Junta de Equipo Diocesano de Emmaus
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Nov 1210:00 am Junta Diocesana
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Nov 17 Diocese of Charleston Native American Catholic Heritage Celebration
    From the Calendar of Native American Ministry
    Nov 18 Vietnamese Martyrs Celebration
    From the Calendar of Vietnamese Ministry
    Dec 1 Black Catholics Heritage Celebration
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Dec 15 Simbang Gabi for Filipino Catholics
    From the Calendar of Filipino Ministry