Cellist is Miss USA 2012
Olivia Culpo of Rhode Island was named Miss USA on Sunday.
The 20-year-old student of Boston University will be representing the United States at the Miss Universe pageant lin December.
Her parents were both musicians, and she began playing cello in the second grade. She has played at the Boston Symphony Hall and Carnegie Hall in New York City.
Culpo was asked by an audience if it was fair that a transgender woman would win Miss USA over a natural born woman, and she answered, "I do think that would be fair, but I can understand that people would be a little apprehensive to take that road."
She went on to say that there are "so many people out there who have a need to change for a happier life. I do accept that because I believe it is a free country."
Later, when the winner's crown was placed on Culpo’s head, tears came to her eyes as she accepted the congratulations of fellow contestants and walked the stage as the new Miss USA in a flowing, purple evening gown.
Miss Maryland, Nana Meriwether, was the runner-up, and contestants from Ohio, Nevada and Georgia rounded out the top five finalists.
Miss Congenialtiy went to Miss Iowa, Rebecca Hodge, and the most photogenic award went to Miss Oregon, Alaina Bergsma.
Source and images: Reuters
Published June 4, 2012