HATTIESBURG, MS (WLOX) - Twenty-year-old, criminal justice major Sawyer Walters just wrapped up a six-week, summer internship in Washington D.C. working for Congressman Steven Palazzo. Prior to his internship, Walters jokingly told friends and family he planned to get a selfie with President Donald Trump. He had no clue that joke would become a reality.
"My friends and my family always joked that I could sell ice to an Eskimo and I told them my one goal is to get a selfie with Donald Trump before I leave D.C. I didn't actually believe I'd be able to do it," said Walters.
It started with an invite from Congressman Palazzo to the annual White House picnic. As President Trump greeted guests on the White House lawn, Walters got his chance.
"He shook hands with a couple people. Walking by I was like, Mr. President may I get a picture? He was like, 'Sure what's the Eagle pin that you're wearing?' Because I had my USM lapel on with a black and gold tie and a suit that I was wearing and I told him it's the University of Southern Miss where I go to school. And he said, 'Oh where are you from? I told him Hattiesburg, Mississippi born and raised. And he told me he did a speaking engagement down in Biloxi and up in Madison for his campaign," Walters recalled.
The USM student also got a chance encounter with other members of the first family, including First Lady Melania Trump.
"She's very beautiful. Her and Ivanka, pictures don't do them justice," he added.
Another memorable moment--shaking hands with the vice president.
"Asked where I was from. What I did. Why was I in D.C. Got to talk for a couple minutes. He was like, 'Well let's take a picture. Do you mind if my wife hops in?' which I thought was funny. You're the vice president. I'm not gonna tell you no," he said.
Walters also got to slip in a conversation with White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer. Still, he says the moment he met the commander-in-chief is one he never expected.
"He's the most powerful man in the world and I wanted to make sure I made a good impression not only for myself but for the people of Mississippi and USM, as well," Walters said.
He also tried to get into the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing with former FBI Director James Comey. Walters said he waited in line for hours with hundreds of other people but never got in. He said he was told the hearing had the biggest show of people since Benghazi.