A local man had the honor of being a guest at the State of the Union address Tuesday night.

It’s an opportunity of a lifetime. An opportunity most of us will never get to experience — sitting in front of the President of the United States for the State of the Union address.

“I’ve been waiting for this opportunity for a very long time. Congressman (Glenn) Thompson was gracious enough to extend an invitation to go to tonight’s event,” said Mark Gusek, attended State of the Union address.

Mark Gusek, the executive director of Life Northwestern Pennsylvania, spoke to WJET just outside the Kennedy Caucus Room moments before heading over to the House chamber.

“I can tell you I was as giddy as a school kid and I’m not afraid to say that. I mean to have the opportunity to sit in a room with everybody and really see our country come together, at least for one speech. It is great,” Gusek added.

Gusek said despite all the fighting you see on TV between the two political parties, there’s actually a lot of positive energy – at least for one night.

“I think there’s a lot of respect, and at least for one night, I think there’s enough bipartisanship. No matter what you see on that floor I can tell you I may not have voted for President Biden but I will tell you he is my president,” said Gusek. “I will say being able to sit in a room to watch the State of the Union with the entire United States government is pretty inspiring, even at my age.

Hear Gusek’s reaction to what he saw and heard during his unique opportunity on JET 24 Action News at 5 p.m.