Haitian beauty places second in Miss Universe 2017
Haitians in South Florida are dizzy with pride that their country woman Raquel Pelissier, 25, was the second placed contestant in the Miss Universe Pageant held last Sunday in Manilla, Philippines. However, the majority, agrees with other local viewers of the annual pageant that the tall elegant Haitian beauty should have won the coveted crown. She lost to Miss France Iris Mittenaere.
Pelissier was an early online favorite with Haitian-Americans, who voted heavily for her to be in the top thirteen. Miami Haitian-American, Leslee Minot says she and her sisters together cast 330 votes for the beauty. However, that wasn’t necessary as Pelissier was already included among the top 12 contestants announced minutes after the pageant began. The thirteenth contestant picked by online viewers was Miss Thailand.
From the top 13, Miss Haiti showed excellent poise, elegance and beauty parading in swim-suit, and evening gown. She progressed to the top five and eventually was named the first runner up or second placed winner.
Minot said, “Haitians are so disappointed. She was clearly the more shapely, intelligent, and beautiful contestant. It’s so hard for Caribbean girls to win Miss Universe. Usually our girls make the top ten or finish in the top three but very rarely receive the crown. Nonetheless we are still very proud of Raquel.”
Pelissier, is a professional model who holds a degree in Optometry and a degree in Scientific Research from the “Universitad Complutense de Madrid” in Spain. She’s fluent in French, Haitian Creole, English and Spanish.
A survivor of the devastating 2011 earthquake, she said participating in the pageant gave her “the opportunity to expose the country’s culture abroad. I want to change the way the rest of the world sees us and make a good impact.” She also said with the eye disease glaucoma prevalent in her family, and which could affect her as she ages, she studied optometry to effectively treat glaucoma.
Offering congratulations, the Consulate of Haiti in Miami, stated, “Congratulations to our heroine Raquel Pelissier ….. We are very proud of you!”