Bozeman boy flips switch on Capitol Christmas Tree - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Bozeman boy flips switch on Capitol Christmas Tree

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WASHINGTON, D.C.- On Wednesday evening, one of the stars of the show got to shine. Not just the 80-pound Montana-made copper star on top of the Capitol Christmas Tree, but also 11-year-old Ridley Brandmayr, who had the honor of flipping the switch for this year’s lighting ceremony.

Brandmayr, a student from Meadowlark Middle School in Bozeman, was chosen this fall by U.S. Sen. Jon Tester to have the honor of lighting the tree. Tester and Brandmayr became friends this last summer after an accident that cost the boy all of the fingers on one hand. Tester also lost three fingers in a boyhood accident.

Brandmayr said lighting the tree was a humbling experience.

“There’s a million people in Montana, and to get picked one out of a million people is just amazing,” Brandmayr said.

Brandmayr’s family enjoyed touring the capitol, including meeting Congressman Greg Gianforte on the House floor and seeing how to vote on a bill.

Brandmayr said he was nervous about the tree lighting, but Speaker of the House Paul Ryan helped coach him through the event.

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