Mother reflects on Pageant

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 26, 2003

Drell Hunter may not have won the Miss America Pageant on Sept. 20, but the memories of her experience will last forever.

It will also be a time that her mother, school crossing guard Bettie Pritchett, will never forget.

The mother of the 23-year-old University of Vermont Law School student spent most of last week in Atlantic City, N.J., watching her daughter compete in the pageant.

Pritchett even got to be on stage with Hunter during the preliminary evening gown competition held on Sept. 16.

All the contestants have been in Atlantic City since early September preparing for the pageant by doing interviews and making public appearances.

During the evening gown competition, Hunter wore a beige off-the-shoulder gown while Pritchett wore a black pantsuit with a white-collar shirt underneath.

Pritchett said this year’s event was the first time pageant organizers allowed contestants to be escorted by their mothers.

Pritchett said the entire experience of being there and sharing moments with her daughter made whole pageant worthwhile.

Though she may not have taken home the top prize, Hunter did receive an award for getting the highest interview score and walked away with a $5,000 scholarship just for being in the Miss America pageant.

Hunter’s platform during the competition was domestic violence awareness.

Now that her moment in the national spotlight is over, Pritchett said her daughter will return to law school and continue working toward her degree.

She will also be making public appearances around the state of Vermont.