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Feb 10, 2017

Rebecca is Back and Thanks Her Country for Support at Miss Universe

She travelled to the Philippines to compete in the most prestigious Miss Universe pageant, within months of becoming Miss Belize. It has been a journey of immeasurable experiences for the beauty ambassador who returned to the country today and was placed in the pan of a pickup truck for a parade through the city.  Rath was featured favorably in the pageant, but the fact that she did not make it to the top did not come in the way of the prominence she gave Belize. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.


[Aerial footage courtesy of Ignite Ltd.....]


Rebecca Rath, Miss Belize Universe

“The fact that Belize did unite and come together and support me was unbelievable feeling. If we can get that support behind anything that happens in Belize—whether it is sports, whether it is music, whatever it is—if we get that support, Belize is going to be unstoppable.”


Duane Moody, Reporting

Around midday today, Miss Belize Universe Rebecca Rath, in the company of her parents, arrived in the Jewel on a Delta flight to a welcoming party. After clearing with immigration and customs, Bex was escorted to the VIP hall of the Phillip Goldson International Airport before being brought into the city for a motorcade through principal streets, leading to the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts for a one-on-one with the media and the public.


Rebecca Rath

Rebecca Rath

“Thankfully I had a very good support team that went all out along with me and it consisted of going to the gym twice a day, not eating anything fried—so no fry jack, which was very hard. Watching the news and educating yourself about issues happening in the world because you know you never know what they can ask you on stage. The competition really started as soon as I got off that plane. I saw other contestants and they were in interviews. I was a little nervous of course because I didn’t know what to expect, but game face on almost instantly. I said I was not going to let these girls show me up at all…so just put on your game face—even if you don’t know what you are doing, you just act like you do—and that confidence that shows and it takes over.”


Rath came to tears as several persons took to the podium to share their gratitude to the beauty ambassador for putting Belize back on the international stage of pageantry. Among those persons was David Matus, the designer, who—along with Roberto Pasos—constructed Rebecca’s national costumed used in the preliminaries of the Miss Universe Pageant.


David Matus

David Matus, Costume Designer

“She gave light to the costume; she gave back Belize something we’ve never seen for years which is putting us back on the map. She did well…everywhere we saw a Rebecca clip; during the pageant, before the pageant. All the interviews, Rebecca was there. She gave hope back to pageantry here in Belize and we want to thank you for doing such a great job. As a designer, we felt proud seeing our piece of work showcased by you.”


OJ Elrington

OJ Elrington, Director, Queen of the Jewel

“I think that Rebecca has done a splendid job in laying a foundation which I hope that as Belize, we can only build on. And therefore I want to thank her, on behalf of my organization, of being a first class….when I mean first class, I mean first class ambassador.”


According to Rath, her first experience in pageant was her best memory in life, but this is the final pageant she’ll be competing in. And how will Rath complete her tenure as Miss Belize?


Rebecca Rath

“Since Miss Belize, I’ve been focused on Miss Universe so I got to get my life back in order a little bit; need to get to work. But I have already been getting requests to continue doing visits to their schools and people want me to come and play volleyball at their schools. So I am going to continue being myself and just go and talk to these kids and just let them know that I am a regular person. I am Miss Belize yeah, but that’s just a name. You can do anything that you want to do; you just gotta work hard at it and form a support team.”


The question that was given to the final three at the Miss Universe was to “name something that they failed at in life and what they learnt.” In making reference to an experience as a teenage national athlete, Rath gave an emotional response and advice to the public.


Rebecca Rath

“Sometimes you work for something…I don’t know why I am getting emotional right now.  Sometimes you work for something, and it doesn’t always work out the way you want to or you don’t always have the right people behind you, but it doesn’t matter. Win or lose, no matter what’s the outcome, you take something away from it—whether it is experiences,  whether it is friends, whether it’s to work harder or what to do the next time—you learn something from it. So what is happening is that if you really work hard and it doesn’t work out, it doesn’t mean that that is the end. Keep trying and do something else…just don’t give up so yes. (Applause)”


Duane Moody for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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