Machipongo native Thelma Peterson placed 2nd in the USAToday Gulf Oil Spill Song Contest, with her song I am at war receiving 4,928 votes which was 31% of the votes. However, Judge Craig Bickhardt picked Peterson's song as his personal favorite.
Peterson had a healthy 5% point lead as of Sunday afternoon, but within the last 12 hours more than 2,000 votes came in to give John Bagnato's Sweet Crude Blues the win with 6,709 votes.
"Of course I would have loved to been in first place but getting the Judge's favorite was an honor in itself I would like to thank all the people who have voted for my song and supported me through this," said Peterson. "I've gotten so many calls and emails from people who heard my song, voted for my song and told me they liked it. They were happy an Eastern Shore girl was recognized on a national stage such as this.">