Anderson’s community unites to send Birdsong to Miss USA pageant

November 19 – ANDERSON – A community has come together to officially send Miss Indiana A’Niyah Birdsong to the Miss USA pageant.

Friends, relatives and community members stopped by Mr. Dan’s restaurant on Thursday to support Birdsong in his quest for the national title.

Birdsong won the title of Miss Indiana earlier this year, representing the city of Anderson.

Birdsong said the shipment was unexpected.

“I am perfectly prepared and ready to do my best,” she said. “I’m excited.”

She doesn’t necessarily see herself as a role model.

“As my journey continues, I see and really enjoy this title,” Birdong said. “I don’t want them to admire me, personalize their life and try to live the life I’ve had. I want them to see this as an example of how to make an impact and I want that. they go further than what I have accomplished. “

She said young people need to set a goal and work to achieve it.

Birdsong’s grandmother, Betty Richardson-Whigham, said she was very excited for A’Niyah.

“Unfortunately his mother won’t be there so we have to pick up the pieces and cheer him on,” she said. DeVeta Whigham, died in a car accident on October 31.

Richardson-Whigham said she really wanted to pass out when Birdsong won the title of Miss Indiana.

“She’s a great role model,” she said. “All the little girls wanted to come see the princess and have their picture taken.”

Christal Johnson, who works at Harrah’s Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, was on hand to hand over a check for $ 2,000 to support Birdsong.

“I believe our first charity starts at home,” she said. “Harrah’s Hoosier Park is committed to being a community partner.

Johnson said it was important to support Birdsong.

“I think that means other little girls who look like him have a lot of hope. (It) shines a light on the community as a whole, and I think sometimes the small communities are forgotten.”

Molly Headley has known A’Niyah since birth, as Headley worked with A’Niyah’s mother.

“It would mean some local recognition that this county hasn’t had in a long time,” she said if Birdsong is crowned Miss USA.

“She is a very, strong, independent and determined young woman,” Headley continued. “She speaks well and is highly educated.”

She hopes the farewell party will attract a lot of people to support Birdsong.

“They should rally around her,” Headley said. “She’s a huge model, not just a beauty on the outside. She has had a heart of gold since birth.”

Follow Ken de la Bastide on Twitter @KendelaBastide, or call 765-640-4863.

Sam D. Gomez