When longtime fan of The Who Ed McConnell first bought his tickets to see the band in Providence, R.I. in 1979 for only $11, he had no idea a cancellation was coming. Until this year, he thought the stub would be useless.

Now that the Dunkin’ Donuts Center is honoring tickets from 1979, McConnell is no longer disgusted with then-Mayor of Providence Vincent “Buddy” Cianci, who canceled the show in 1979 after a deadly crowd stampede in Cincinnati two weeks earlier.

“Now I should call his [Cianci’s] radio show and thank him!” McConnell told the Providence Journal in the video below, which documents the ticket trade-in this week.

McConnell originally bought his ticket with a large group of friends, none of whom could find their tickets anywhere. But he knew exactly where his two stubs were, collecting dust in a cigar box and tacked on a cork board at his childhood home.

According to the Providence Journal, 10 fans traded in a total of 14 tickets, which were then donated to the Rhode Island Special Olympics and put up for auction. One fan said she will be seeing The Who for the first time, while everyone else said they have already seen them multiple times.

The Who come to the Dunkin’ Donuts Center for their first show in Providence since ’79 on February 6, 2013. The rockers will kick off their 37-date North American Quadrophenia tour, announced last month, on November 1st. The British rockers will provide the finale to the London Olympics’ closing ceremony on August 12th.

– Matt Dolloff, 100.7 WZLX


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