Benny's World

Saturday, June 25, 2005

06/25: Meeting JRE for the First Time

It was a year ago that I met some great people (and some who felt we could not be friends sometime later), and we went to meet JRE at a special gathering before some events at the Iowa Democratic Convention last year. Tensions were so high because all of us wanted JRE on the VP ticket.

Rather than going into a lot of detail, I think I will try to describe what I felt and thought at the moment he came out of the elevator into an office suite of many supporters and trial lawyers.

I remember I felt being caught off guard, even though we were waiting for him close by. I think we expected him a little later as he was only a few minutes behind schedule. The second reaction was one of joy and laughter when he went over to meet a supporter who was in our group. Her face was though she was meeting Paul McCartney in 1963; shocked and almost fainted. He said, "hello, I'm John Edwards." She retorted, "is that really you?"

It was about 10 minutes later that I was introduced to him by another in our group as one of OAC blog co-moderators. He said "Bless you." Then he and one of my friends got our picture taken with him.

I regret that I don't know where those pictures are. I wish I had the one with Jackie, JRE and me as it was a good picture, and I cherish her friendship very much today.

Anyway, I remember calling my mom because I believe I was also still in state of shock, feeling in a way like a groupie, yet proud to meet this star on our horizon. Later, I told someone that it was difficult for me to say much because I was so struck by his immediate connection with people and his candor. My husband says playfully that my meeting JRE was a life event for me, as I am now more than ever more observant of what our government does. Most of all, it was more of a spiritual experience.

Today I still feel the same way about him. He is a man of the people, and our messenger of hope and goodness. Photo September 2004, in Bloomington, IL (second time to meet him) copyright RAS


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