Arkansas Health Care Association crowns 95-year-old district pageant queen

Published: Feb. 13, 2020 at 5:30 PM CST
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The Arkansas Health Care Association crowned Ina Young of Southridge Village Nursing and Rehab as its District 4 pageant winner.

Young, 95, is from Mountain Home. She is a former homemaker and nurse for the Veterans Administration who says that, along with the birth of her first child, she’s most proud of having worked at missile bases as a nurse through the VA. She has four children, “many” grandchildren, and “many more” great-grandchildren. For the competition, she wore a long-sleeved green sequined evening gown beneath a black shawl.

Eva Costello of The Good Samaritan Society in Hot Springs Village took first runner-up, followed by Syble Duke of the Beebe Retirement Center. Hazel Cross of Cave City Nursing Home was picked Ms. Congeniality.

“We’re so proud of these contestants. They represent not just the residential communities they come from, but, really, a generation of Americans,” said Cat Hamilton, a spokeswoman for the association. “The pageants for young women capture our imaginations because of the talents and the promise of the contestants. This pageant system is really about the accomplishments, the wisdom, the personal histories that we can appreciate and learn from.”

The association’s Queen Pageant system began back in the early to mid-1980s as a celebration of National Nursing Home Week. The district pageants cover about 10 counties and are the second leg of the statewide Arkansas Health Care Association’s Queen Pageant systems. Contestants arrived having been selected from their respective centers and homes.

This year’s state pageant will be April 21 in Hot Springs.