Breaking News
More () »

Arkansas woman finally gets her pageant crown after 55 years

It was a special day for a Springdale graduate, decades in the making. Springdale High re-crowned one of its very first Miss Springdale pageant winners.

SPRINGDALE, Ark. — On Monday afternoon, Judi Cox received her crown after 55 years—she was the only Springdale High School pageant winner who didn’t get to keep her crown.

1967 is the year Cox was originally crowned Miss Springdale. That same year, the school decided to cut back on expenses which meant Judi had to pass her crown onto the winner the following year. 

“So, that was okay with me. The next year they said, 'you know, let’s just keep the crown and buy new ones each year,' so I was the only one that didn’t get a crown,” Cox said. 

Over 55 years later, she gets to wear her crown once again.

“I’m Judi’s hairstylist and when she was in to see me, I joked that she was one of my VIP clients, and she’s very funny, so she joked 'well, I was Miss Springdale High School,'" Amy Cotham said. 

"She told me the story about how she had the crown, and she didn’t get to keep it, so I just thought, well, let's see if we can get her crown,” Cotham said.

Judi’s family and friends said they had a surprise for her birthday, but she had no idea it would bring her to her former high school.

“I was actually losing my mind trying to figure out what’s going on today, but I never would’ve guessed this in a million years,” Cox said. 

A moment decades in the making that she'll never forget. 

“I just wanted her to get her crown… I thought it’d be nice for her, it would be fun,” Cotham explained. 

“I have a little crown on top of the trophy that’s just a cheap little crown that I bought just to make it look like it was the crown. So now I get to put the real crown on the trophy… that’ll be fun,” Cox explained.

The Miss Springdale pageant concluded in 2009 when it evolved to become the Mr. and Miss Springdale High School pageant.

RELATED: Dolly Parton donation strategy: 'I just give from my heart'

RELATED: Arkansas second-grader awarded for saving his best friend's life

Follow 5NEWS on social media: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Download the 5NEWS app on your smartphone:

Stream 5NEWS 24/7 on the 5+ app: How to watch the 5+ app on your streaming device

To report a typo or grammatical error, please email KFSMDigitalTeam@tegna.com and detail which story you're referring to.

Before You Leave, Check This Out