LEWISTON – Seventeen-year-old Natalie Beaudoin was traveling to Florida when she learned of the tragedy in her hometown.

Six days before Halloween, Robert Card killed 18 people and injured 13 in Lewiston.

Beaudoin, a senior at Lewiston High School and captain of the girls’ basketball team, immediately wondered what she could do for her community.

Then, the head of the marketing firm that represents her — Beaudoin is a NCAA Division I-bound athlete — nudged her in the right direction.

Several people have created Lewiston-branded T-shirts and other apparel to raise money for those impacted by the Oct. 25 mass shooting. Clockwise from top left: Natalie Beaudoin’s “We Are Lew1ston” design; Rogue Life Maine’s “Lewiston Strong” shirt; Bates students’ take on a “Lewiston Strong,” shirt with an ode to the Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul; Salt & Pine Co.’s shirt featuring a silhouette of Maine with a heart over Lewiston. Contributed photos

“As an athlete and role model in the community, we decided that designing a community-focused clothing line would be one of the fastest ways she could support her community, plus raise funds for the families impacted by the mass shootings,” Greg Glynn, founder and CEO of Pliable Marketing, said.

The two created T-shirts and sweatshirts with “We Are Lew1ston” printed on them, with all proceeds from sale of the shirts helping to support families impacted by the Lewiston shootings.


It is a design that simultaneously conveys “We Are Lewiston” and “We Are 1.”

Beaudoin is one of several Mainers who have quickly created Lewiston-branded clothing to raise money for those affected by the Oct. 25 mass shooting, so far generating a total of more than $176,100.

Rogue Life Maine employees Wanda Doucette, left, and Tina Edmonds fill orders Oct. 31 for “Lewiston Strong” hats and shirts at the Westminster Street business in Lewiston. Owner Mark Rodrigue has pledged that all proceeds from sale of the items will go to those impacted by the Oct. 25 mass shooting that killed 18 people and injured 13 at two businesses in Lewiston. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

Lewiston-based Rogue Life Maine is selling stickers, shirts, hats and beanies with “Lewiston Strong” wrapped around the original Maine flag.

A Bates College graduate and a current Bates student have teamed up to create another take on the “Lewiston Strong” message, incorporating a likeness of the Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, a landmark in Lewiston that hosted a vigil that drew thousands to honor the slain.

Salt & Pine Co. of Portland has made T-shirts featuring the shape of the state of Maine with a heart over Lewiston — similar to those hung inside the New England Patriots’ dressing room this weekend.

And the Portland Sea Dogs, Maine’s minor league baseball team, launched a presale of a special jersey that incorporates the “Lewiston Strong” slogan, a nod to the original Maine flag and the silhouette of Maine, with a heart marking Lewiston. Team officials said they hope the jersey will ship by mid-December.


Rogue Life Maine employees Jennifer Jacobson, foreground, and Judy Hall locate items to fill orders Oct. 31 as customers line up for “Lewiston Strong” hats, shirts and decals at the Westminster Street business in Lewiston. Owner Mark Rodrigue has pledged that all proceeds from sale of the items will go to those impacted by the Oct. 25 mass shooting that killed 18 people and injured 13 at two businesses in Lewiston. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

Most items are selling for between $15 and $35, with the option to donate more when paying. The Sea Dogs jersey costs $120.

A spokesperson for the Sea Dogs said the $15,000 the group has raised so far has come from auctioning several items, in addition to jersey sales. The auction had raised about $4,100 as of Thursday afternoon.

“Over the past (weeks), people in our community and state have experienced a lot of different emotions,” Beaudoin said. “The ‘We Are Lew1ston’ design represents how we have all come together to support one another and what we’ve all been through. While the message on the front is important, the most important thing is the person wearing it and how they feel about our community.”

The Portland Sea Dogs have launched a presale of a special jersey to benefit those impacted by the Lewiston mass shooting. Organization officials say they hope the jerseys will ship by mid-December. Courtesy of Portland Sea Dogs

Rachel Bernier, who runs D R Designs Inc., a screen printing and embroidery company in Manchester, was given the responsibility of having a batch of Beaudoin’s shirts ready before a Nov. 2 high school football game. And not just any game. It was the Battle of the Bridge, which each year pits Lewiston High School against Edward Little High School of Auburn. For obvious reasons, the game took on added meaning this year as the Twin Cities grieved.

In Manchester, Bernier and a colleague worked with precision and patience to get the message printed on black T-shirts. Each shirt was pressed with a machine before the two spread ink through stencils that spelled out the message.

For Bernier, the shooting hit close to home.


“I was in complete shock when I heard about it. It’s so sad,” she said. “I feel for the Card family, too. They had been trying to get him (Robert Card) help.”

Nichole Labbe screen prints a “We Are Lew1ston” shirt recently at D R Designs Inc. in Manchester. Natalie Beaudoin, a senior at Lewiston High School and captain of the girl’s basketball team, designed the community-focused clothing line to raise money for those impacted by the Oct. 25 mass shooting in Lewiston. All proceeds from the “We Are Lew1ston” line of T-shirts, sweatshirts and other apparel will benefit families affected by the killings. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Bernier noted she had been getting requests for Lewiston T-shirts and sweatshirts from near and not so near.

“All these places want to show their support and do whatever they can, and I am here to help them,” Bernier said.

The idea served its purpose. At the football game Thursday, the crowd cheered and people walked in wearing clothes bearing Beaudoin’s message, a sign the communities are moving toward recovery.

Displays of solidarity have swept across central Maine over the past two weeks, from vigils to fundraisers and other shows of support.

At the same time, monetary donations have poured in from across the country. Verified GoFundMe accounts for families of those killed or injured in the Lewiston shootings had raised more than $1.6 million as of Thursday.


Natalie Beaudoin, right, of Lewiston High School and Aiwen Maiwen of Edward Little High School of Auburn vie for the opening during a game Feb. 9 in Auburn. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal file

United Way of Androscoggin County, the Maine Philanthropy Center, the Maine Community Foundation and other charities are also accepting tax-deductible donations to help support the families and recovery efforts across the region.

The city of Lewiston has created a recovery fund and is accepting donations through Androscoggin Bank, although it was not clear Thursday if the donations can be deducted on income taxes.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Amanda Dunigan (@saltandpineco)

Gov. Janet Mills’ Healing Together website lists several other legitimate organizations to which people can donate. Maine Attorney General Aaron Frey has advised that people consult the Consumer Protection Division’s guide to vetting charities before making a contribution.

“Being at the football game and seeing all the first responders and people on the front lines was a very powerful moment,” Beaudoin said. “I am so proud to be part of this community as we continue to demonstrate strength and support each other. We are all in this together, as one city, one state and one country.”

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.