September 25, 2000
L-R Julia Johns, George W. Bush, Tasha Zabel, Shain Zebel, Ross Hunnicutt, Jannell Hunnicutt, Rhen Zabel, Rosalie Hunnicutt, Cayla Zabel.
MONROE - Three local families, the Zabels from Monroe, the Johns' from Woodinville, and the Hunnicutts from Snohomish, were able to meet Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush September 13 while he was in Monroe for a press conference.
The Bush entourage was visiting a farm near the Haskell Slough along the Snohomish River.
Dave Johns said that the families decided to visit the area in hopes of seeing the candidate. Johns said that about 100 supporters were along the road to the farm, along with five demonstrators, including one in a salmon costume.
Two 15-minute press conferences were held for primarily the television crews, he said.
"We begged the Secret Service to let our kids see 'the next president'," said Johns. "They let us up within 100 feet so the kids could see Bush. Then the press left and were told we could mingle and we made a beeline for Bush."
Johns said as soon as Bush saw the kids, he motioned for them to move in for photos.
"A ring of Secret Service surrounded us," Johns said.
Johns said Bush overheard the Hunnicutt children were twins and said, "I have twins."
Johns said the group "snapped a couple of pictures and left. We felt very lucky. We had a friend who is originally from Shanghai with us who was astonished that the American public could get so close to the candidates."