- The 2019 Miss USA pageant was on May 2, 2019.
- The pageant started back in 1952 in retaliation for a slight by the reigning Miss America, who refused to wear a bathing suit designed by sponsor Catalina.
- Now it’s one of the two biggest pageants in the country, and its winner represents the US at Miss Universe.
- It’s also a very emotional day, as shown by these winners.
- Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.
Winning Miss USA is potentially the peak of any beauty queen’s career. It’s no shock that getting crowned would cause an emotional reaction of joy, shock, and even tears.
Luckily for us, there’s usually a camera around to capture the thrilling moment. From 1953 to 2019, here are 35 Miss USA winners the exact moment they won.
1955: Miss Vermont Carlene King Johnson
1958: Miss Louisiana Eurlyne Howell
1965: Miss Ohio Sue Ann Downey
Downey’s hair has the signature ’60s wave.
1967: Miss Alabama Sylvia Hitchcock
Hitchcock memorably said during her pageant, “I can’t think of a single disadvantage that goes along with being pretty,” according to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
1968: Miss Washington Dorothy Anstett
At the time, getting the crown earned the winner a $US10,000 prize and a brand-new wardrobe, reported the Reading Eagle.
1972: Miss Hawaii Tanya Wilson
Wilson originally competed as Miss Nevada in 1970 but after a move to Hawaii competed for the Aloha State.
1973: Miss Illinois Amanda Jones
Jones was the 22nd Miss USA and was 22 years old when she won her crown.
1974: Miss Illinois Karen Morrison
At 5-foot-11, Morrison was the tallest person to win a major beauty pageant at the time, according to the Sumter Daily Item.
1980: Miss South Carolina Shawn Weatherly
Weatherly was the fifth Miss USA to become Miss Universe when she competed in Seoul, South Korea.
1983: Miss California Julie Hayek
Hayek went on to appear in multiple TV shows including “Moonlighting,” “Dallas,” and “Twin Peaks.”
1986: Miss Texas Christy Fichtner
Yes, that Halle Berry was the runner-up for Miss USA 1986 – and she’s not the only celebrity to have dabbled in the beauty pageant world.
1990: Miss Michigan Carole Gist
1992: Miss California Shannon Marketic
Marketic also won Miss Photogenic at the 1992 pageant.
1993: Miss Michigan Kenya Moore
Moore can be seen on “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” though she left as a full-time cast member in 2018.
1996: Miss Louisiana Ali Landry
Landry is one of the most notable former-Miss USA winners, having since appeared in numerous commercials, magazines, and movies. In 2018, she appeared in an episode of sitcom “Kevin Can Wait.”
1999: Miss New York Kimberly Ann Pressler
Pressler has been the reporter for all FOX Sports Professional Bowlers Association events since 2010.
2000: Miss Tennessee Lynnette Cole
2001: Miss Texas Kandace Krueger
The 2001 pageant was hosted for the first and only time by William Shatner after he played a pageant host in the 2000 comedy “Miss Congeniality.”
2002: Miss Washington, DC, Shauntay Hinton
Hinton was the first winner from Washington, DC, in 38 years. The last Miss District of Columbia winner was in 1964.
2004: Miss Missouri Shandi Finnessey
After her reign ended, Finnessey appeared on and won the short-lived reality dating competition show “Ready for Love.” She was chosen by one of the show’s three bachelors, though the two broke up shortly after.
2005: Miss North Carolina Chelsea Cooley
After her reign, Cooley joined the girl group BQ Girls – BQ stands for Beauty Queens – alongside former Miss Universe 1998 Wendy Fitzwilliam, Miss Teen USA 2012 first runner-up Haley Seibert, and Miss China Universe 2011 third runner-up Yi Na.
2006: Miss Kentucky Tara Conner
2007: Miss Tennessee Rachel Smith
When Smith travelled to Mexico for Miss Universe, she dressed up as Elvis Presley for the National Costume Show to honour her Tennessee home.
2008: Miss Texas Crystle Stewart
Stewart had her first major acting role in the 2018 film “Acrimony,” written and directed by Tyler Perry.
2009: Miss North Carolina Kristen Dalton
Pageants are in Dalton’s blood – her mother, Jennie, was Miss North Carolina in 1982 and her sister, Julia, was the second runner-up in the 2008 Miss Teen USA pageant.
2010: Miss Michigan Rima Fakih
ABC News reported that Fakih was the first Muslim Miss USA.
2011: Miss California Alyssa Campanella
Pageant queen Campanella is now married to another royal of sorts, actor Torrance Coombs, who played the illegitimate son of King Henry II on “Reign.”
2012: Miss Rhode Island Olivia Culpo
Culpo went on to win Miss Universe, the first Miss USA to take the crown since 1997.
2013: Miss Connecticut Erin Brady
Brady was the first Miss Connecticut to win Miss USA.
2014: Miss Nevada Nia Sanchez
2015: Miss Oklahoma Olivia Jordan
Jordan is the first woman to represent the US at two international pageants. She was the American representative at Miss Universe, as all Miss USAs are, and also was Miss World America at the Miss World pageant in 2013.
2016: Miss Washington, DC, Deshauna Barber
2017: Miss Washington, DC, Kára McCullough
This was a back-to-back win for Washington, DC.
2018: Miss Nebraska Sarah Rose Summers
Summers was the reigning Miss USA after placing in the top 20 at Miss Universe.
2019: Miss North Carolina Cheslie Kryst
Kryst is a full-time attorney who works on getting inmates released from prison.
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