By Ayus Wijaya
In international competition, a contestant is normally a representative of a country or a region. But at Miss International 2003, held in Tokyo, Japan, there was a unique case where two contestants did not represent a country or a region, but a particular ethnicity, instead.
The first of these two delegates is Lana-la Trell Onque Henry who represented the Native American community (or more colloquially known as Indian people) in United States and competed as Miss Native American. Lana-la is a woman of Choctaw Indian origin who was 23 years old by the time she competed at Miss International 2003. She is 180 cm tall.
The second delegate is Lorena Ruiz Martinez who represented the Latin community in Mexico and competed as Miss Latin Mexico. Lorena was was 23 years old by the time she competed at Miss International 2003. She is 162 cm tall. Unlike Lana-la who actually represented a minority ethnicity in her country, I found Lorena's participation as nothing but an excuse for Mexico to send two delegates. After all, most of the Mexcian are Latin people, so why should they have a special representative in the pageant. One delegate wearing Miss Mexico sash is more than enough to represent all the Latin people in Mexico.
I was trying to find more pictures of these two women during their pageant days but the only picture that I could find is this group picture above, courtesy of Pageantopolis. In that picture Miss Native American is the second girl from left on the back row while Miss Latin Mexico is the sixth girl from right on the back row. Both of them eventually failed to make the cut. It was the first and the only time a delegate competing in the pageant as a representative of an ethnicity. Since then there are no more ethnicity representatives at Miss International pageant.
Stay tuned for more Back to Past Moment news, where we will compile various memorable pageant moments and events from the past!
Photo Source : Global Beauties and Pageantopolis