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Suns' historic playoff run takes a Valley family down memory lane

A Peoria mom caught on camera with a standout sign at a 1993 Phoenix Suns airport rally remembers rooting for the team with her son.

Through rips and stains, Cindy McCloe has held on to a 1993 newspaper clipping for decades.

"We still laugh about it," she said. "It’s a funny situation."

The clipping is the front and second page of the Arizona Republic's sports section on June 20, 1993. On the front there's a big picture of fans at the Suns airport rally, waiting nearly three hours for the team to come back from Chicago after a Game 5 win. But on the back, one sign stands out in particular.

"I thought, 'nobody’s going to know that that’s me,'" McCloe said. "Sure enough, I went to work and everyone was like, 'We saw you in the paper! What were you doing at the airport?'"

McCloe was front and center in that page two photo, holding the sign she made with her son and his friend: "The Fat Lady Was Only Humming."

"The Bulls were so confident," she said. "It was like, 'hold your horses.'"

McCloe was sticking out in a crowd of hopefuls, but the shot doesn't show the whole picture.

"I was hoping it was the boys," McCloe told 12 News, "my son and his friend that were holding the sign."

However, someone snapped the still when her son was in the bathroom. Their disappointment only continued when the Suns would go on to lose the Championship title in Game 6 back in Phoenix.

"They were so anxious to get on TV," McCloe said.

A shot her son wasn’t about to miss twice. When 12 News went to go interview McCloe, her son Travis, who lives in Washington state now, jumped on a FaceTime call with his mom.

The pair talked about the newspaper clipping and all the memories that came with it 28 years ago.

"Remember you said where we stopped to get the poster board?" his mom asked.

"Smitty's," he remembered.  "The old grocery store."

Travis, now a parent himself, is still a diehard Suns fan.  He sometimes will watch with his parents over FaceTime or give them a call during halftime.

"I haven’t missed one minute of a Suns game this year," he said. That level of commitment was fostered at a young age. 

RELATED: Suns say fan violence has ‘no place anywhere’ after fight breaks out at Road Game Rally

"It’s definitely a bond between all of us!" Cindy McCloe said.

They went on to talk about myriad memories, like camping out for playoff tickets in downtown Phoenix or catching games at the Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

"Get tickets from scalpers on a Friday or Saturday night," Travis remembered. "That’s one of my best memories."

He was 14 years old when his mother took him to that airport rally in the middle of the night.

"I kind of used you guys as an excuse," his mom laughed. "The kids as an excuse to do spontaneous things."

Mother and son are still just as hopeful as that night back in 1993 as the Suns head into Game 4 against the Bucks with a 2-1 series lead.

“I’m sure they’re going to have a parade if they win," Cindy McCloe said.

Before hanging up, they talked about creating another sign. One they've been waiting years to finally make, so long as the Suns pull of a championship win: "The Fat Lady Has Finally Sung."

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