John Whitley realizes a campaign can be taxing on those running for public office.
The vice chair of the Williamsburg Democratic Committee held an informal event for some of the locals on Monday evening to thank them for making that sacrifice.
Monty Mason and Mike Mullin, who successfully ran for state Senate and the House of Delegates respectively, showed up. So did Shaun Brown, who lost in her run for the the 2nd Congressional District.
Mason resigned his seat in the House of Delegates to run for the seat his friend John Miller left after he died in April.
"This was the strangest election for me," Mason said. "With John dying on April 4, and me running against two individuals in the election and resigning my seat (in the House of Delegates.) To say I'm happy is a safe statement."
Brown lost her bid for Virginia's 2nd Congressional District to Republican Scott Taylor.
"Hopefully I'll be up here in two years sounding like Mike and Monty," she said.
Mason painted the coming years as an opportunity for Democrats on the Peninsula to get ready to work on the ideals they still hold dear.
"When Trump won people asked me, 'are you moving to Canada?' I said 'No, this is the time for us to stand up on the chair.'"
Mullin is a practicing criminal prosecutor with three sons. Recently, he helped a young girl face her alleged abuser in the courtroom. He stressed how proud he is to have a chance to fight for the community in a legislative area, in lieu of a courtroom.
"I saw more strength in her than I'll ever have," he said. "I hope I can speak on behalf of the 93rd (District) the same way."
Wright can be reached by phone at 757-345-2343.