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Local girl will sing anthem for Game 5

October 15, 1997

By JULIE E. GREENE

Staff Writer

When the Baltimore Orioles and the Cleveland Indians clinched berths in the American League Championship Series last week, Hagerstown native Dawn Younker joked with her father about calling the Orioles to see if she and a friend could sing "The Star-Spangled Banner."

While Younker never made the phone call, she did receive word last week she and her friend, Betsy Werbel, could sing the anthem before Game 5 today in Baltimore, said Younker's father, Bruce.

Besides being huge baseball fans, Younker, 26, and Werbel, are cast members of the national touring production of "Les Miserables."

While Younker roots for the home team, Werbel backs the Indians.

With the Orioles' win on Monday night, the team guaranteed not only a fifth game in the best of seven series, but a chance for Younker to fulfill a dream, her father said.

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"It's like a dream come true. She's had so many of them," said Halfway resident Bruce Younker, who will be there today to see and hear his daughter and her castmates sing.

"To go see your daughter sing the national anthem in front of the home team that you root for is - wow," Younker said.

The cast won't have the opportunity to stick around and watch the game because the show opens at the Morris Mechanic Theatre in Baltimore tonight, Younker said.

Dawn Younker is no stranger to huge performances.

On Feb. 27, 1996, she made her debut in the role of Eponine, one of the leads in "Les Miserables," in front of President Clinton.

Today, she and about 40 cast members will sing the anthem at 4 p.m. in Camden Yards, which is expected to be sold out with a crowd of about 49,000 fans.

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