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Marshfield community uses art to remember teen

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Marshfield Skate Park

MARSHFIELD, Wis. (WAOW) -- At Marshfield Skate Park the ramps and signs are covered with graffiti. It's all artwork to remember a very special community member. 

Cameron Kirschbaum (Cam) was 16 when he passed away from a fatal overdose in October. 

"We won't have him back, we'll never have him back," Tommy Kirschbaum, Cam's father, said. 

His friends and family called him "Booln Cam", and said he was an amazing kid. 

A month after his passing, his friends and family take to the skate park he spent hours at many days since childhood, remembering him through spray paint and loving words. 

"He skated here, with all of his brothers and sisters and all of his friends, he rode bicycles here, they all hung out here, for years and years and years this was their hangout," Tommy Kirschbaum said. "This is why the children of this community picked this as his place of memorial."

Now, they hope to bring awareness to the dangerous situation he had been in. 

"It had only been three weeks, that we were looking for help, and then it only took one time (doing drugs) and bam!, he died."

Some people were not in support of the way the graffiti looked, and asked the city to clean the park, and suggested alternatives at a Marshfield City Council meeting.

"If students, if we could design something that would look very nice to the entire community instead of just having people haphazardly use the walls for drawing on." said Janice M.

The Marshfield City Council met on Tuesday and decided to clean the graffiti from the walls. They will ultimately replace it with a mural or memorial of some kind in remembrance of Cam and to raise awareness of the severity of addiction. 

"This is so this doesn't happen to other people, even if it's one person, as kids hang out here every summer, they can read all of this stuff and know that this does happen," Kirschbaum said. "Cam used to come here every day, and he died." 

The city does plan on involving the community in the decision-making process as things progress. 

Have story ideas? You can send them to slee@waow.com 

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