Report by James Franklin , Reporter
Friday, April 27, 2012
A WESTON woman is hoping to be crowned Miss Universe after entering the competition following the deaths of her father and grandfather.
Lorraine Stretch will compete against more than 40 other women from across the country in a bid to be crowned UK Miss Universe on May 5.
The 25-year-old, of Osmond Road, Locking Castle, could then go on to challenge for the worldwide title in December.
Skincare manager Lorraine said the death of her father, Keith, from a brain tumour and her grandfather Ian Mason from lung cancer last year was key to convincing her to take part.
She said: “My father had a really good career working for Mitsubishi which allowed him to travel and see a lot of the world, which was something that has always inspired me.
“I had booked flights to travel around South America last year, when my dad was suddenly diagnosed with a brain tumour.
“I left my job early and spent lots of time with him when he was in a hospital bed at home. He was ecstatic to hear that I was going travelling.”
Her father died on April 27, before his daughter set off for South America.
She added: “When I went travelling I knew he was with me all the way – his funeral song started playing in the airport when I touched down in Ecuador.”
When she got back her grandfather was diagnosed with lung cancer, and died in September.
She said: “By then I was a bit numb as it appeared that everyone was passing away. It made me realise that life is too short to go through without trying to achieve your goals, so I decided I would enter the competition.
“Miss Universe combines lots of things I really want to do in my life – travel, raise money for charities which are in need of help, meet people from all over the world and represent Great Britain.”
She will compete in four rounds at Birmingham’s Town Hall on May 5 – an interview, cocktail dress, bikini and ‘wow’ dress.
If she wins the national heat, she will take part in the worldwide final in December.
To vote for Lorraine in the final visit www.missuniversegb.co.uk
On Friday she also helped to raise more than £500 for a charity which supports children with bone disorders and diseases at Bonds Wine Bar and The Edge bar. The raffle and prize-giving events were held to raise money for Strongbones, Miss Universe GB’s supported charity for 2012.