This is for Aston

This is for Aston

BY RICHARD JOHNSON
Observer senior reporter
johnsonr@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, December 15, 2019

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Weston Haughton and Dahlia Harris, the co-franchise holders of the Miss Jamaica World pageant, are dedicating Toni-Ann Singh's win at Miss World to late franchise holder Aston Cooke.

Cooke, along with Haughton, formed Crown of Beauty Jamaica Limited in 2018 and took over the pageant. They tasted success with their first queen, as Kadijah Robinson finished in the top five and secured the Caribbean Queen of Beauty title.

Tragedy struck in February of this year, however when Cooke was found dead in his St Andrew apartment.

This lead Haughton to recruit Harris to fill the slot to stage the 2019 pageant.

“This was done for him,” Haughton told the Jamaica Observer.

“If my memory serves me right, Toni-Ann was one of Aston's prospects when he was scouting for contestants last year. However, because she was still in school it was not possible, so to see it all come to fruition this year is nothing short of amazing and in tribute to him,” he said.

“When Aston passed and Weston asked me to come on board it was a big decision because it was not in my plan; but I decided to join the team to maintain Aston's dream and legacy. Last year Jamaica finished in the top five, so to match that was indeed daunting. To see that we not only matched, but we surpassed last year and won Miss World is amazing. All this is for Aston,” Harris shared.

Both hope this win, Jamaica's fourth hold on the crown, will reposition the importance of Miss World for a new generation, given that the last win was 26 years ago. They also hope it will make future stagings of the local competition easier to execute.

“For Miss Jamaica World, the task of seeking sponsorship is an uphill battle; we have to constantly be explaining the benefit and why this is relevant. With a reigning Miss World, I hope it opens the way for better conversations,” said Harris.

“I hope the sponsors will come running in droves. It has not been easy and we are happy for the sponsors that we do have, but a lot of things have to get done through our personal efforts. Hope it will be easier,” Haughton added.


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