The following are the last four of the 12 River Days candidates for Miss River Days.
Alexis Katherine Graf, Miss Notre Dame
My aunt, Katie Graf, was killed in a fatal car accident in 1998 and simply because she wasn’t wearing her seatbelt, she didn’t walk away from the accident. I have seen the devastating effects that her passing has caused my family and her friends. I could never imagine losing one of my four siblings like my Dad and aunt Crystal did, that is why throughout my reign as Miss Notre Dame I have spread awareness on my platform, “What’s Holding You Back?” which teaches all about the importance of seatbelt safety. This past July, I held my community service event called “Saved by the Belt”. I had the honor of partnering with the Ohio State Highway Patrol, MedFlight, and Portsmouth Fire Department & Emergency Medical Squad. I advertised with brochures that included statistics and details on my event, I also spoke on a telecast at the Ohio State Endeavor Center. At the event, I shared my aunt Katie’s story and talked about the importance of seat belt usage along with Sergeant John Howard & Lieutenant Shawn Kelley. I held a mock accident scenario as well. A wrecked car was flipped on its top and actors were staged with bloody & injured makeup as if they were in a real accident. One of the actors was laying on the ground as if she were thrown from the car because she was not wearing her seatbelt. She then was pronounced dead and the actor who played her mother was informed of her passing.
Jaylin Pearsall, Miss Portsmouth
My platform is “Not Violent, Not Silent: Raising Awareness Against Domestic Violence.” I chose this topic because it is a very common issue that stands close to my heart. Five out of six of my immediate adult female family members have all been in a domestic violence situation once in their lives. My job as Miss Portsmouth is to see to it that people are aware of the red flags that many people ignore. They are not aware that something little could end up snowballing out of control and result in the death of the victim. Women who try to leave are up to 75% more likely to be killed than a woman who stays. I am doing my best to encourage victims to seek safe shelter and leave relationships the first chance they are given, because, for them, tomorrow may never come. The best thing you can do is know your red flags and set boundaries. If you notice red flags or your partner crossing boundaries, I highly encourage you to cut off communication and know you deserve the love you give.
Addison Smith, Miss South Webster
My platform is entitled L.I.F.T.: Let’s Inspire Females Together. L.I.F.T. was inspired by the cruel world that young females face in the modern-day. Every day, young teenage females are being faced with the thought of needing to be perfect. Social media has made this unrealistic image of what girls need to be: super skinny, super healthy, acne-free, super tan, athletic, etc. This is simply immoral. We as a society should be lifting up these young women instead of providing them with unrealistic comparisons. We, as girls tend to tear each other down due to jealousy or just saying stuff to hurt one another. This includes gossip, purposefully leaving people out, saying rude things, making fun of one another and so much more. With L.I.F.T., my hope and goal is to have as many females as possible inspired and determined to be happy and accepting of themselves and their peers. We need to be lifting each other up and cheering each other on instead of trying to outshine one another. The sky would be awfully dark if there was only one star.
Emma Dempsey, Miss Wheelersburg
As Miss Wheelersburg 2019, my platform is “Love Multiples” and this deals with adoption. I have two adopted siblings of my own which created my passion for this topic. Although some may see them as just my siblings, they will always be my true brother and sister. There are over 400,000 children patiently awaiting a new home. With these numbers growing, I felt it was my job to educate people on the need for adoption. Every child deserves a chance to succeed and feel a families love. If my story can encourage another family to adopt, then I have done my job.
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