BILLINGS, Mont. – Tyler Linfesty didn’t expect to become an Internet meme after he was selected for a plum spot directly behind President Trump at his Thursday rally in Billings.
The 17-year-old Billings West High School senior – now referred to as #PlaidShirtGuy – talked with MTN News on Friday about his whirlwind last 24 hours, which included appearances on several national TV news outlets and being featured in dozens of articles across the country.
Linfesty said his now-famous facial reactions to the President’s speech were honest but unintentional. Halfway through, he was escorted away from spot and replaced with a woman who was apparently a Trump campaign staffer. A few minutes later, two of his friends were also escorted away from the spot behind the President.
Several people have complained that two of the teens sitting near Linfesty, who were wearing FFA jackets, have not received any media attention.
Carrie Wilson posted this message on several Facebook pages: “Why is this kid getting all the attention for being disrespectful. How about the 2 Young men next to him wearing the FFA jackets getting some well-deserved attention.”
One of the two in the FFA jacket is Jack Bernhardt, who replied to Wilson: “I was the FFA kid on his right and I very much appreciate your comment! But I chatted with all three of those guys and they seemed respectful enough. His two friends also attended Boys State with me earlier in the summer!”
Before that, however, Linfesty got his picture taken with Trump (though he hasn’t yet received a print) and he had hoped to get the President to sign a book. It was a copy of “The Communist Manifesto” wrapped in the jacket of Trump’s “Art of the Deal,” which Linfesty thought would be funny. (He stressed he’s not a communist or socialist.)
After graduation, Linfesty, who came to MTN News with his parents Jessica and Ron, said he plans to attend college and study physics.
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