Vancouver’s streets might be emptier than usual for Tuesday morning’s commute, as people across the city tune in to watch Barack Obama become the first African-American president of the United States.

It’s a moment Paul Kerston, a U.S.-born Vancouverite and member of Democrats Abroad Vancouver, says he’s been waiting for his whole life.

“I’m sitting here getting goose bumps,” Kerston said yesterday.


“In Vancouver, I know a lot of people are going to be glued to their sets. Some of them are just not going to be at work early.”

Kerston said it will be a “huge” moment for him.

“I’m old enough to remember the assassination of Martin Luther King. So I’ve personally lived what this is a beginning of, overcoming (exactly what) Martin Luther King said we would.”

Kerston said the inauguration will also mark the culmination of months of work on the part of the group to see Obama elected.

Some members campaigned over the phone while others travelled south of the border to campaign door-to-door.

Tonight, members of Democrats Abroad Vancouver will be volunteering at First United Church on East Hastings Street as part of Obama’s call for all Americans to participate in public on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

A program with speakers will start at 7:30 p.m. at the church, and will include Coun. Heather Deal.

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