MOSQUERO, N.M. (KRQE) – A New Mexico beauty queen is fighting for a national title, but for the small town girl the competition is about much more than a crown.
In Mosquero, New Mexico, a town with fewer than 200 people, everyone knows the girl with a big smile, big crown and big dreams.
Yet, they may not know the physical challenges she battles every day.
“Chiari malformation, ehlers-danslos disease and pots,” Madi Turner said, describing the three disorders she is living with.
In simpler terms, her brain is too big for her skull. She is also unable to regulate her body temperature, blood pressure, and heart rate like most of us.
Just last year she had a major operation.
“Last January I had brain surgery,” Turner said.
Her doctors said most people living with these disabilities are confined to a wheelchair, but she wasn’t going to let that be her fate. She took matters into her own hands and made competing in pageants her job.
“So I started this as kind of a symbol to show them just because you have a disability doesn’t mean you are disabled, and it doesn’t mean you have to give up on your dreams,” Turner said.
While pursuing her goal to be the next Miss New Mexico Teen USA, she is also helping others achieve their goals, starting at home in Mosquero.
“So we had a ‘Restore the Downtown’ project, which was we have a bunch of murals in our downtown. The reason we did the murals is because we are such a small village that it brings in tourism,” Turner said.
While she wants to attract people to her town, she also wants to bring attention to the daily struggles that she and other children face.
“I am glad that she is standing up and speaking out about those disorders for those people to maybe raise awareness and possibly get funding so maybe there is a cure,” Madi’s mother, Angela Turner, said.
The 17-year-old is not just a beauty queen, she is a role model, fighting for a cause.
“While you may have to alter your dreams you can still achieve the dreams that you want,” Turner said.
Madi is having a sendoff party fundraiser Friday before she goes off to nationals. It will be in Mosquero at Headquarters Restaurant, and her family said everyone is welcome.
She will go to nationals this weekend. The pageant is July 1 in Orlando.
The People’s Choice Awards will be collecting votes for each contestant and the one with the most votes automatically advances to the finals.
To vote for Madi Turner, click here.