Congressman Robert Aderholt’s office arranged for several tours of the Nation’s Capitol for David Maze and his family including the White House. In order to tour the White House, a security check is required along with a letter from the congressman. Recently, a third level of security was added—an additional pass from the congressman’s office. They didn’t have that. Without the pass, they couldn’t proceed. The final security checkpoint said they had to leave. As Maze turned to leave, in walked Aderholt. The timing couldn’t have been more perfectly scripted. The White House tour began. Fortunately, Aderholt came to the White House at 8 a.m. to meet them.

Aderholt scored even more points on day two, he personally gave a tour of the Capitol. Two other families and 50 boy scouts from Ireland sat on the main floor of the House of Representatives while Aderholt spoke about the history of the chamber.

A second, local connection occurred on day three during a scheduled tour of the Supreme Court. The day before the tour, Justice John Paul Stevens died. As such, the Supreme Court was being prepared for his body to lie in state, and all tours were cancelled. Attempts to reach the Maze’s failed, so they arrived ready for a tour. At the information desk there was a young man whom Maze said looked exactly like Jody Hunt (former Chief of Staff for Attorney General Jeff Sessions) at age 20. It was Jody’s son, Gannon.

“If his son has half the brain of his father and his brilliant aunt, Alice Hunt, who wrote code for the Hubble telescope and is currently Executive Director of the American Academy of Religion, he’s a genius,” Maze said.

Maze has visited the Capital twice before. The last trip was in 1976 with Boaz High Valedictorian Lane Watts in a week-long government program called “Presidential Classroom.” The keynote speaker of that program was Justice Thurgood Marshall. The prior trip was made when his mother arranged a summer school program so Maze wouldn’t have to have her as his teacher in ninth grade civics. The class included Col. John Shields and Boaz historian Wayne Hunt.

Two other highlights included the Marine Parade at the Barracks and a sunset program at the Capitol with the Singing Sergeants. “The weather had been brutally hot but on this evening the temperature was perfect,” Maze said. “The burnt orange sunset came from behind the Washington Monument and reflected burnt orange on the Capitol. Against the blue sky, It was surreal. The Sergeants were terrific and next to us sat an Auburn family. We never had to worry about our souvenirs being stolen.”

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