Where do you want to fly?
For a Keedysville family, Sunday’s concert by Gary Puckett and the Union Gap at The Maryland Theatre was a special reunion.
About 25 years ago, sisters Jerica and Brittany Hewett wrote Puckett a letter inviting him to a birthday party when he was going to be in Hagerstown for a June 25, 1994, show at the Hagerstown Fairgrounds.
They loved Puckett’s song “Young Girl” and just had to see him.
Puckett gave them a surprise when the girls and their parents went to the show.
Just before he launched into “Young Girl,” he asked Jerica, who was 5 years old, and Brittany, who was 8, to join him on the stage.
After their time with Puckett onstage, they were invited backstage with the singer, where a photo was snapped of Puckett with the girls.
With Puckett scheduled to appear for a 3 p.m. show Sunday at the downtown theater, the girls’ father had a thought.
Wouldn’t it be neat to have that photo repeated?
Allen Hewett worked on it, and Puckett’s people agreed to it.
After Sunday’s show, Puckett gathered Jerica (Hewett) Wetzel and Brittany Hewett-Smith together for a photo, along with their children.
Puckett talked a while with the local family.
“Life is good?” Puckett asked.
“Goodbye kids, nice to meet you,” Puckett said to the girls’ children. “I’m sorry we didn’t have more time to spend (together).”
Allen Hewett, a Keedysville private investigator, recalled how the first encounter with Puckett occurred.
Hewett said the girls’ letter to Puckett was sent to a local radio station. Somehow it made it to the musician.
“We were shocked when he called us up. He was a real nice guy, in addition to being a good singer,” Hewett said, recalling the 1994 show.
Puckett autographed the picture that was snapped of him with the girls in 1994. The photo ended up in The Herald-Mail, a clipping of which Hewett still has on his refrigerator.
To line up Sunday’s encounter between Puckett and the family, Hewett emailed the Puckett camp with a photo-op request. Puckett’s people responded quickly, Wetzel said.
“I think it’s really cool. It’s going to be great for the kids to see it,” Wetzel said prior to Sunday’s show.
Hewett-Smith said she grew up listening to 1960s and ’70s music.
“This Gary Puckett Show will bring it full circle,” Hewett-Smith said.
Puckett sang “Young Girl” to close the show.