Her name is Velma Louise Johnson, and she was the winner of the 1966 Cocoa Beach Pageant and Athletic Competition. Back then, it wasn't just about looks. Velma Louise, or Pinky to her closest friends, trained in all the important traditions--etiquette, comportment, elocution, and grooming, to name just a few.
"It's not enough to be beautiful," Pinky said in her judges interview. "A Cocoa Beach girl must be an all-round American, just as comfortable in the sand as at a cotillion."
For years, Pinky tried to get her daughters, then her granddaughters, to participate in the pageants held in Brevard County and around Florida, but they just didn't seem interested.
"Today, girls have a different idea of what it means to be a woman," Pinky, now a resident of the Cocoa Beach Retirement Facility, says. "They think it's all about success, about what you have and how relevant you are." She sighs wistfully for a moment, apparently remembering her glory days. "I don't think they even know how to have fun anymore."
"But we remember. We really had fun back then." She smiles, though, and winks. "We still do."