Soldiers of the 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, took time to give back to the community by assisting in the inaugural Ms. Magnolia Manor Pageant, Friday, at the Magnolia Manor of Columbus Assisted Living Community.
Five senior citizen ladies were chosen by friends and family to compete for the title of Ms. Magnolia Manor, the final event in the community’s celebration of Senior Citizens’ Week.
“Fort Benning makes Columbus what it is,” said Lori Duggan, recreational therapist for the West Building at Magnolia Manor Assisted Living Community. “The soldiers and their families support the community so much, we were honored to have some soldiers come out and escort our contestants.”
Dorothy Grogan, 85 years young, was crowned the first Ms. Magnolia Manor and will attend the Georgia Nursing Home Beauty Pageant, February in Atlanta.
The first runner-up was Francis Smith, second runner-up, Rachel Jones, third runner-up and best interview, Lula Carter, and fourth runner-up and Ms. Congeniality, Mildred Rivers.
All five contestants competed in an interview session and an evening attire event.
“These ladies are spectacular,” said Duggan. “All the residents can charm you with their smiles and stories. All of them are amazing.”
Sledgehammer soldiers escorted the contestants down the runway as well as during the evening attire portion of the pageant.
“It is absolutely rewarding to give back to the local community,” said Spc. Michael P. Bradley, Company A, 1st Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division. “Whether working with kids or the elderly, being able to brighten their day is always rewarding.”
Magnolia Manor plans to hold the pageant annually in conjunction with Senior Citizens’ Week.
Story by Sgt. Christopher Johnston
3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division Public Affairs
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