Story by Tori Quinn
Chloe Killingsworth was overwhelmed with emotion when the judges of the Miss YMCA Pageant announced her as the winner.
“I had already picked out who I thought would win,” recalled Killingsworth. “When they called my name, I burst into tears.”
Though Killingsworth had participated in other pageants, she felt unqualified to win the title of Miss YMCA. When her name was called to receive the crown, it caught the teen by complete surprise.
“I was so excited!” exclaimed Killingsworth. “I met my mom off-stage, and we both just cried.”
Killingsworth has risen with cheerfulness to the challenge of carrying the crown for her community. Part of the responsibility of Miss YMCA is to represent the organization in community activities. Killingsworth has found it easier to carry out this task with the support she has from family.
“I’m really close with my mom,” Killingsworth said. “She’s been so great with planning everything and helping us get it all together.”
The greatest moments for Killingsworth as Miss YMCA has been serving her community and finding out just “how much the community does for everybody.”
“It has made me a better person,” stated Killingsworth of her title. “It has given me a better appreciation for my community.”
Building relationships has been something Killingsworth has treasured as reigning Miss YMCA. She has worked to make sure she’s “always a good role model for everybody,” and her priority has been “always looking out for my [sister queens].”
“I want them to feel comfortable coming to me for help,” stated Killingsworth concerning her sister queens having any needs, problems or questions.
“Serving with my sister queens has been a lot of fun,” Killingsworth recalled. “I’ve gotten to know everybody better.”
Killingsworth’s sister queens include Junior Miss Hannah Strohmer-Hill, Young Miss Kenleigh Smith, Little Miss Kimber Ray and Tiny Miss Emery Blackmon.
Killingsworth laughed at the memories she’s made with her sister queens.
“Spending time with my sister queens is fun. They all have such a great sense of humor. They’re hilarious,” Killingsworth said.
When asked how reigning as Miss YMCA has affected her, Killingsworth spoke of her new respect for her community.
“I have a different perspective of the world,” stated Killingsworth.
Along with her new worldview, Killingsworth has gained a new personal viewpoint as well. She has learned the value of always being the best version of herself that she can be.
“People are always watching, watching your actions. People look up to you,” said Killingsworth.
For Killingsworth, connecting with her community has been the most meaningful part of reigning as Miss YMCA.
“It has been great [to] meet new people and meet new families. It has been a lot of fun. I’m already going to miss being queen,” Killingsworth fondly remarked.
One of the events Killingsworth and her queen sisters were able to serve in was raising money to buy Christmas presents for a teen in foster care. A pancake brunch was held at the Farmhouse Café in Thorsby where the money was raised.
“We had a pajama party and a dance party. It was a lot of fun,” recounted Killingsworth.
Along with her sister queens, Killingsworth has also participated in several parades as Miss YMCA, including the Peach Capital Parade during the county’s celebration of its 150th anniversary.
Her favorite community service activity has been the annual Trick or Treat the Streets event held in downtown Clanton.
“We dressed up like princesses and gave out a ton of candy. We took a lot of pictures with all the little babies in their costumes. They were so adorable. It was so much fun.”
Killingsworth also enjoyed celebrating the Thorsby little league football team and cheerleading squad.
“We passed out sashes and roses for their homecoming. It was a lot of fun,” said Killingsworth.
Becoming a servant to her community is where Miss YMCA 2018 wants to build a career. A junior at Chilton County High, Killingsworth is eagerly looking forward to the future.
“I have my sights set on the legal field. Everyone wants to become a nurse or a doctor. I want to do something different. I’m leaning towards becoming a police officer.”