Area poll worker feels forgotten by Caps parade date selection

WASHINGTON — For Dawn Canady, a longtime Washington Capitals fan, tears of joy filled her eyes when she watched the team become Stanley Cup champions on TV last week.

A day later, the tears came again for the Woodbridge, Va., woman, but this time they were caused by heartbreak.

“I was devastated, I cried when I heard the parade was Tuesday,” Canady said.

Canady had long ago promised to work her local election site for Virginia’s primaries which also fall on Tuesday. She says she is among many poll workers, candidates and candidates’ staff members who want to attend the historic parade, but cannot. With only a short time until the polls open, Canady said she won’t renege on her promise to voters who depend on her and others to operate the Commonwealth’s polling sites.

For Canady, she was there when the Capitals fell to the Detroit Red Wings in the Stanley Cup Final in 1998 and has since yearned for a chance to celebrate the Capitals as Stanley Cup Champions.

“I have been waiting decades to go to a parade like this, and now I can’t go,” an emotional Canady said.

She feels parade organizers should have not only coordinated with the D.C., but also Virginia and Maryland, before coming up with a date for the parade. Canady believes, had that have been done, Tuesday wouldn’t have been selected.

“They [the Capitals] belong to all of us, all of us in the region,” Canady said.

The election process isn’t the only reason Capitals fans in the commonwealth say they cannot attend the parade. School remains in session in some jurisdictions and for one mother on Twitter, she said final exams will keep her and her family from attending.

Canady understands changing the date of the parade will most likely not happen, but she hopes Virginia might step up and offer a rally or parade for those who couldn’t celebrate the team’s win on Tuesday because of the election.

“So we can have a chance to celebrate, too,” Canady said.

WTOP has reached out to the Virginia Governor’s office and the Washington Capitals for comment on this story.

Mike Murillo

Mike Murillo is a reporter and anchor at WTOP. Before joining WTOP in 2013, he worked in radio in Orlando, New York City and Philadelphia.

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