Photography by Cloverstrom & Ron Crichton
Walethia Aquil is proprietor of two businesses, Grace and Charm, which conducts workshops seminars on etiquette, and My Dreams do Come True (MDDCT), a non-profit she started to provide free prom dresses to young women.
For years, everything went well. Then came the stumbling blocks.
Even though Walethia led a healthy lifestyle, her health took suddenly took a nose dive. As she went through a near death experience, Aquil’s self-esteem suffered. “Doctors could not explain why I was so ill,” she recalled. All of sudden, the thought of attending events and interacting with people, gave me anxiety attacks! I felt like a prisoner in my home.”
“My husband gave me an ultimatum. I had to choose between my businesses. I chose My Dreams Do Come True, which in my mind was the least stressful.”
Aquil decided to participate in a pageant for two reasons. First, she wanted personal experience–My Dreams do Come True will hold a pageant in the near future. Second, Walethia wanted to inspire women in her age group not to give up on their dreams. Entering her first pageant at age sixty-five, Aquil was surprised once again.
“I thought I really had it together,” Walethia says. However, when I became active in the pageant community, my weaknesses were painfully exposed. Oh my God–how could that be? I taught etiquette, conducted workshops and seminars worldwide, and spoke to thousands via radio, TV, and print media. A well-known TV personality called me the “Queen of Media.” I had even created a workshop called “How to Rock the Media!”
Determined to press forward, Walethia went through the pageant’s application process. “I submitted my application along with the fees, and competed in what is called a preliminary. Even though I was the only women competing for the state title in my age category, I had to accumulate enough points to move forward.
Walethia was crowned 2016 Michigan Classy Ms. Queen. At age 65, she is the oldest contestant to win a Pure International state title and compete for the “National Classy Ms.” title.
Being crowned at the state level was exciting and fun for Walethia. However, Aquil did not spend a lot of time preparing for nationals. She bombed the interview, ultimately placing in the top five, which was her personal goal.
As state title holder, Aquil will have the opportunity to attend community activities and volunteer her services to organizations, giving her business more creditability in the community. If you’d like to book Walethia for your next event, please contact the Michigan State director at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pure International Pageants is Christian based pageant system zero-adult for females and zero-fourteen for males. For more information visit the pageant’s international website www.pureinternationalpageants.com, or contact the national office at 740-709-1612.