Sunrise at East Cobb, GA, is home to many residents with unique pasts, including a former beauty queen. 88-year-old Helen Warren was once crowned Miss Kinston in North Carolina. In order to relive the magical moment, the community recreated the memorable experience for Helen. The dream originated when Grace, a local Pope High School student, visited with Helen at Sunrise. During their encounter, Helen shared her pageant history and that it was one the most special times of her life. Afterward, Grace submitted Helen’s story to Second Wind Dreams and they selected her dream to be made into a reality.
It was nothing short of a full pageant complete with a makeover, crowning, reception, sash, tiara and parade! With the help of Second Wind Dreams, friends, family and many volunteers from Pope High School and the local community, Sunrise was able to fulfill a dream come true. The event included performers from the school’s drama department and an overflow room with video streaming so that all residents, team members and loved ones could share the special moment of crowning Helen.
After which, Donald Trump gave a personal video message to Helen, giving her the title of Honorary Miss USA! She was then presented with an authentic Miss USA crown and sash, just like the ones seen on TV! The guest judge was Robin Gibbs, host of TLC’s show “Say Yes to the Dress.” Helen was then escorted down the red carpet and swept away in a convertible celebratory ride. Meanwhile, Sunrise of East Cobb’s dining team had a beautiful spread of food fit for a queen.
Finally, Helen was given signed congratulatory letters from one queen to another, including Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA. Residents signed notes congratulating Helen, which the Pope High School students have turned into a photo album. Helen’s family says the community made a dream of a lifetime come true that their mother will always remember. As for Helen, she expressed her emotions simply as, “overjoyed” after the magical day!