Entertainment Tonight and Hamburg TV Station
I did a media interview with Entertainment Tonight. The reporter was very friendly. He asked me to explain why I supported Governor Palin — and why I would wait over 24 hours to see her. “I support her Reagan Conservatism, her positions on the Second Amendment and oil drilling. I admire her 17 years of executive experience and Transformational Leadership. We have not seen a leader like this in 150 years.” Do you want her to to run for President in 2012?, he asked. “YES! I believe she was summoned to carry Reagan’s torch. But I will support her no matter the path she chooses,” I said. We agreed to do a second interview after the signing. The first interview was completed at 1516 EST. My second interview with Entertainment Tonight took place at 1759 EST.
The same questions were asked in my interview with the Hamburg, Germany with my responses mirroring what was said to Entertainment Tonight. The Hamburg interview was completed at 1656 EST.
Ron Devito Going Rogue with Governor Palin
Finally, the time had come. I deposited my jacket and gift card on the table. I threw Adrienne a salute and passed her the books to give to Governor Palin. It was Saturday, November 21, 2009 at the seventeenth hour and the fortieth minute.
“Governor Palin…Sarah….it’s nice to see you again.” We locked eyes…she shook my hand, said “Hi, what’s your name.” “I’m Ron Devito, from Staten Island. You signed my heart in Pennsylvania.” She smiled…I could tell she remembered. “I like your buttons,” she said. But…I saw her looking at the Palin Power button, I had been selling. Pointing to the button, I said, “Today, I prototyped this one. And I will be giving it to you in the gift box. It is yours.” “Thank you,” Governor Palin said. It was time to leave….I turned back….”It was nice to see you again” — followed by a pregnant pause — “my President.” She ended the conversation with a final thank you and I took my signed books.
There was no time for personalization, and for collectors, non-personalized signed books are worth more money (mine is NOT for sale at any price). My fleeting time with Governor Palin went by faster than a Concorde flying overhead at Mach 2.2.
When SarahPAC photographer Shealah Craighead releases the photos, I will acquire. She may or may not grant me permission to post, but I will ask.
I went to the main shopping area, finished off the gift card and took what was now Governor Palin’s property off my heart, put it in with the card, sealed it and left it and went outside to work the crowd, and wait for my colleagues….
Photography: Ron Devito. Trig Paxson Van Palin. Photo re-touched to remove red-eye.
Photography: Ron Devito. Sally Heath, with whom I shook hands and had two brief conversations. When I told her I’m from Staten Island, her eyes lit up. “We worked on Fresh Kills.” “I know…it’s only 8 miles from my house.” We exchanged some pleasantries, and then I said, “Your daughter is going to make history.”
Photography: Ron Devito. Chuck and Sally Heath announce to the overflow crowd that Governor Palin will sign their books. Mrs. Heath hugs a supporter. Photo re-touched to remove red-eye.
From the Outside Looking In
Having had my books signed and awaiting my colleagues…we were going to eat dinner together after the signing, I took some potshots with the camera of Governor Palin signing books….
Photography: Ron Devito. A shot of Governor Palin with the back of her head facing the window. Piper Palin is to her right.
Photography Ron Devito. Profile view of Governor Palin.
Photography: Ron Devito. A blurred view, but one where Governor Palin’s face is visible.
From Going Bust to Going Rogue
As the evening progressed, jubilant supporters emerged with their signed books. One small boy was ecstatic: “she touched me! She actually touched me!” The little child wasn’t expecting Governor Palin to shake his hand. JD Merkel returned after the Heaths’ announcements. I told him to get on that line NOW….his book was going to be signed….JD went Rogue, not Bust after all….
Governor Palin and her staff left through the back of the store, the same way they entered. I ran to try to see her along with the crowd, but only saw the motorcade pull away. The store re-opened, the crowd dispersed, and I went to meet with my colleagues. We were all exhausted and hungry. Governor Palin had been gone 15 minutes, when an ugly act of hatred unfolded….an act reminiscent of the days not of banning books, but of burning them…
Going Rogue: Rochester, NY, Part VI — Going Home