He traveled the 30 miles to Illinois’ capital in Springfield, and made the rounds of legislative offices. He circulated resumes in hopes of becoming an intern to increase his knowledge to be able to help the region so devastated. He was rebuffed at every office. Undeterred, he decided to run for office himself, circulating nominating petitions for state representative and offering volunteer services to the local Republican Party. His request to volunteer was not only rebuffed, he was advised that it would be in his best interest to not file as a candidate. A young man with little experience, he took that message to heart and did not file the petitions. Despite the discouragement Bouvet received, he was not personally discouraged. He maintained his political interest.
Then in 2015, he heard the message of Donald Trump. He knew that Trump was speaking to him, his family and his town. He responded again with offering his work to the local Republican Party on behalf of candidate Trump. He was again rebuffed, being advised that despite a stated policy of not taking primary sides the local party would be supporting Governor Kasich of Ohio.
Bouvet would take it upon himself to spread the word regarding candidate Trump by employing his own skills to social media. He would be dubbed “King of the Memes”. His work did not go unnoticed, and ultimately he would be invited to an inaugural event. The Washington Post did a story about Bouvet which would catch the eye of then President-elect Trump. That story lead to Bouvet to a personal meeting with Trump the day before the inauguration. Trump heard Shane’s story, including things about his struggles as a single father and his dad’s battle with cancer. Ultimately President Trump gifted Bouvet $10,000, which in turn Shane gave to his father for his medical expenses.
Bouvet instantly became a national celebrity. His story appeared on news outlets across the country, and he was personally interviewed by many national cable, broadcast and print outlets. As a result, he has the direct phone numbers and emails of numerous news producers and reporters, national, regional and local.
In the year following the gift from the President, Bouvet continued his media support for the President and the Make America Great Again philosophy. He would receive another invitation from President Trump, this time to bring his father to the Oval Office. Upon confirming with Don Bouvet that Shane had given the entire $10,000 to his father for medical expenses, President Trump gifted Shane an additional $5,000. The President’s final words to Shane as he was leaving the Oval Office: “The world needs to hear your story,” referring to how a 24 year old young man would pass along an unexpected to gift to his father in need. There are numerous books related to Donald Trump now on book shelves. Shane Bouvet and President Trump will be the first resulting from the suggestion of the President.