SUGARLOAF TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — This time of year, many people associate cemeteries with Halloween.

But this story isn’t scary, it is inspiring. One teenager saw a local historic cemetery as a Girl Scout Silver Award Project that would help her and her community.

Erica Schwear has been in the Girl Scouts since fourth grade and this year she needed to find a Silver work project.

“When you’re picking a project you want to pick something that has sustainability, and so the community knows what you did,” said Erica Schwear, Girl Scout from Sugarloaf.

In her search for a project, she found herself speaking with the board of the Brainerd Historic Church.

“I went to one of their meetings in hopes that they would have a project for me to do. They were having trouble cutting and maintaining the grass around the tombstones because they were just so fallen over,” Schwear explained.

So she started work on the historic cemetery, raising 33 tombstones. Which included making sure they would remain upright.

“Obviously take the pieces apart and we had to brush them down with a metal wire brush. To get all the debris off of them and stuff. Then we would wet it down and put water-activated gorilla glue down. Then we would put the stone back on top of it,” Schwear continued.

Lifting some stones close to 100 pounds.

“Multiple people had to use prybars and we pushed the stones up to where we thought was straight. Someone else was shoveling dirt and rocks underneath it to make it straight,” Schwear added.

After 53 hours of work on weekdays and weekends, the job was done.

“From like hot days and definitely trying to manage your time, it takes a lot of work,” Schwear said.

Erica came away with new skills and a newfound respect for her community.

“So it makes you feel like really a part of it. I know this for me definitely brought me a little bit closer to where I was brought up,” Schwear stated.

Erica is a student at MMI Prep and next week Eyewitness News will meet Erica’s brother John. If you have a kid we should feature on our Here’s To You Kid send us an email at the station at