East Texas missionaries behind Tyler’s graffiti clean-up - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

East Texas missionaries behind Tyler’s graffiti clean-up

(Source: KLTV Staff) (Source: KLTV Staff)
(Source: KLTV Staff) (Source: KLTV Staff)
(Source: KLTV Staff) (Source: KLTV Staff)

Keeping the city clean has become the goal of one Tyler couple. Franklin and Doris Burns have built churches overseas for the past 40 years and when they are home in Tyler, they've found another way to help the community.

A new day, a new message for Franklin Burns and his wife Doris.

"They took pictures of this and sent it to us last night," Franklin Burns said.

The 80- and 75-year-olds are behind an effort called Tyler Against Graffiti. They said summer is typically their busiest season.

"After school or right before school starts," Franklin Burns said.

They respond to homes and public places, but parks typically see the most action.

"It is on the playground equipment; it's on the restrooms," Franklin Burns said.

The Fair Parking Garage downtown is filled with gray and white patches where Burns has come in and painted over graffiti and he says often times they deal with repeat offenders.

"We actually call it painting squares. We try to match the paint as much as we can as well as we can," Franklin Burns said.

When they aren't painting over graffiti, the Burns build churches overseas.

"They have graffiti just like they do in Tyler, and so we have to go in and clean it all off," Doris Burns said.

Here they sometimes spend 40 hours a week cleaning graffiti.

"We consider it a ministry, because we are helping people," Doris Burns said.

Their goal is to clean up or paint over the graffiti within 72 hours of getting a report.

"We try to get it off as fast as we can and that encourages someone else to come and cover up their graffiti and put their markings on it," Franklin Burns said.

It is a crime to paint graffiti on public or private property. Tyler police said charge vary based on the value of the damage. To report graffiti contact Tyler Against Graffiti at 903-535-TAG@

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