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Trump fans excited about visit

BEAUMONT — Buttons, caps, T-shirts and signs featuring Donald Trump’s image and slogan “Make American Great Again” were on tap as thousands of people poured into Ford Park Arena in Beaumont to hear the presidential candidate hopeful speak.

The line to enter the building snaked down towards the fairground area as some, such as Helen Overall of Beaumont, took time to purchase a button or other memento from vendors affiliated with the Republican National Committee.

Crowd members wait their turn to greet Donald Trump. Mary Meaux/The News

Crowd members wait their turn to greet Donald Trump.
Mary Meaux/The News

Clark Eastman of Lumberton brought along his children.

“We’re excited,” Clark Eastman said. “There has to be some kind of change.”

Eastman’s daughter, Casey, 12, held a neon green sign welcoming Trump.

An area of the parking lot was set aside for protestors and around 9:30 a.m. Katelynn Bordages, Jeremy Marks and another man who said he was “a concerned citizen” held signs.

Katelynn Bordages, left, Jeremy Marks and a concerned citizen voice their displeasure with Donald Trump outside Ford Park Saturday. Mary Meaux/The News

Katelynn Bordages, left, Jeremy Marks and a concerned citizen voice their displeasure with Donald Trump outside Ford Park Saturday.
Mary Meaux/The News

Bordages’ sign said “Trump, you’re the reason this country needs to change,” while the concerned citizen held a sign with the names and photos of Alfred Rascon who was awarded the medal of honor during his service in the Vietnam War and Jose Guiterrez who died in a fire fight in Iraq in 2003. Rascon’s family came to the U.S. undocumented from Mexico, the sign read. Guiterrez’s parents died and he traveled 2,000 miles alone at the age of 14 from Guatemala undocumented.

“Are these men not American enough?” the sign read.

The crowd breaks out their cell phone lights to the song “Hey Jude” while waiting on Trump’s arrival.  Mary Meaux/The News

The crowd breaks out their cell phone lights to the song “Hey Jude” while waiting on Trump’s arrival.
Mary Meaux/The News

Inside the facility the tone was different from the protestors. B.J. Myers of Hull said it’s time for a change. Monica Doehrmann is also a supporter of Trump.

“I support legal immigration and support the law and want to make America great again,” Doehrmann said.

E-mail: mary.meaux@panews.com

Twitter: MaryMeauxPANews