January 12, 2011
Elizabeth Hughes, 8, made her debut singing the national anthem at an AHL Norfolk Admirals (the Tampa Bay Lightning's affiliate) game against the Connecticut Whale (New York Rangers' affiliate) last Friday night. Angelic voice, bundle of nerves ... and then after the words "gave proof," her microphone abruptly cut out.
What happened next might be something we've seen before at a sporting event, but that never lacks for inspiration (and maybe a misty eye or two). There's a moment around 1:30 into this clip that gives us hope for humanity:
An 8-year-old girl is about to suffer a moment of extreme embarrassment that's not of her creation. A woman in the crowd cackles at this moment; not laughs, cackles. You then hear someone "shoosh" those like her during the brief silence. You then hear the crowd pick up the tune in unison.
[Another anthem flub: But this time, crowd is less supportive]
From Kim P., an Admirals season-ticket holder who sent over the clip:
The little girl did not lose composure at all and after a second the crowd took cue and started singing. But even the players were singing and did a stick tap at the end.
[Video: Rocker destroys the National Anthem]
According to Elizabeth's mother Dorothy Shiloff Hughes (on YouTube), she was invited to sing at another Norfolk home game this season. Hopefully without incident; but if there is one, at least she knows hockey fans have her back.
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