The two arrived in Washington the Saturday before the inauguration, to pick up their tickets and to tour the city.
"We did go to the Capitol that day to look everything over and see where we would be seated. Of course, when you're there on Saturday, that's nothing like when you get there on the day and see all the thousands of people that come for the inauguration," Pace said.
The trip also included attendance at the Bluegrass Ball, a celebration held prior to the inauguration for Kentuckians living in or visiting the D.C. area.
"Everyone was there from Kentucky. The governor and his wife, Senator Bunning from the northern Kentucky area and Mitch McConnell. Muhammad Ali was there as a featured guest," Pace said.
The ball was hosted by the Kentucky Society of Washington, a group created for Kentucky natives living in the capital.
"When you're a member, they have different things throughout the year, and if you happen to be there, you can go to it as a member â?¦. That was very interesting," Pace said.
Then the day of the inauguration arrived. It was a day that stands out in Pace's mind as much for the bitter cold temperatures as it does for the historical significance.
"It was really awesome. We had gotten up early that morning. It was really cold. We had our long underwear, we had scarves, we had toboggans, everything to wear to that inauguration," Pace said with a laugh.
Although Pace and Milton had tickets, the crowds made it impossible for them to actually find their seats.
"Once we got to the inauguration, we never really did get to our seats, it was so crowded, but we did get a good spot where we could see everything happen. We watched Obama as he descended the steps of the Capitol â?¦. You could see a sea of people," Pace said. "I had never seen that many people gathered before. I guess that was the largest crowd I saw in my life. They were so respectful of others."
That respect was a pleasant surprise for Pace.
"You did see the respect. Everyone was just so excited. They had on their Obama buttons and shirts and caps and anything you would think of because of the inauguration. People would hug you that you didn't even know and they would say, â??Thanks for being here.' I did think, â??This is a time when it's not black or white, it's just people here, more or less trying to get along together," Pace said.
It was a day that made her think about what it means to be an American citizen, and made her excited about the possibilities for the future.
"You could see the meaning of our liberty and our creed, in the men and women of every race and faith can join together in celebrationâ?¦ .I do think he will try to bring the country together â?¦. There were people of all ages at the inauguration. I really was at awe with the respect that people did have," Pace said. "I feel that there was integrity with this group of people."
The experience also made Pace reflect on all the changes she's seen over her lifetime, and the changes that have yet to happen.
"I did think this was a day of change. I knew it was a day of change because I've been around a long time, and you wonder if you would ever see a black African-American become president of the United States. I guess I never thought I would witness anything like that. That would be what stood out, being able to witness this African-American man sworn in as the 44th president," Pace said. "Hopefully, he will be able to help us come out of this stressful situation that we're in."
Contact Rachel Parsons at email@example.com.