Lynchburg, VA - There are a few people in Lynchburg that were selected to head to Tampa for the Republican National Convention.
The men selected see their trip to Tampa as the ultimate American honor; a true tradition of democracy, where they get to be front and center on a national stage.
"A lot of these buttons really went like hot cakes," said Wendell Walker as he holds up a Sarah Palin pin.
Walker has been to a convention... or two.
"This will be my third convention that I'm going to," he said.
It's become somewhat of a tradition attending each RNC since 2000. He's been both a delegate and a spectator. This time around, Walker's one of Virginia's alternate delegates. He says regardless of role, the excitement never fades.
"The excitement probably won't hit me until I walk in that coliseum Monday morning, and realize, I am one of the privileged people that Virginians have chosen to be there to represent them," he said.
Frank Landrey is a 6th Congressional District delegate. After raising $2,000, and paying his own way to travel the 16 hours to Tampa, he says he's going for one reason.
"I've heard enough of all the platitudes. And here I sit, going on 72 years old, 40 years of voting and working the polls, and I see us $16 trillion in debt, even with Republicans in and out," he said.
So now both men with their republican red suitcases are ready to have their voices heard.
As for a storm, even that can't crush their excitement.
"Whether it's a tropical depression or whether it's a hurricane, that God will listen to us and push that thing way out into the gulf," said Walker.
Both men said they're looking forward to hearing the national party platform; something that's created at the convention. But the pinnacle of next week, they say will be when Mitt Romney takes that stage and accepts his party's nomination.