JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD, Wash. – Most people never get to meet a former U.S. President and best-selling author, and military families at Joint Base Lewis-McChord certainly didn’t let the opportunity pass them by.
Shoppers of all ages—including Veterans—descended upon the Fort Lewis Exchange on July 1 to meet President Bill Clinton and author James Patterson, who signed copies of their new book, “The President is Missing.”
From more than two hours, Clinton and Patterson greeted military shoppers, staying well past their allotted time to ensure everybody got through the line, said Christel Kelly, sales and merchandise manager at the Lewis Exchange.
“The crowd was extremely excited,” she said. “We had a few customers cry and a few just in awe they had a lifetime opportunity to meet the former President and Mr. Patterson. Two disabled Veterans refused to bring in their wheelchairs because they wanted to stand for the former President of the United States.
“President Clinton took time to shake everybody’s hand and engage with every single person in front of him.”
Fiction book a warning?
Shoppers picked up nearly 450 books, which translated into more than $10,000 in sales. In fact, total sales for the books and magazines department totaled $10,444 for the day, compared to average daily sales of just $410.
The book, which is thriller fiction, focuses on a cyberattack on America’s infrastructure. Clinton told reporters in Seattle that he hopes the book will help raise awareness about computer vulnerabilities in this country and the importance of strengthening cybersecurity.
Check out the pictures from Clinton and Patterson’s visit here.