In 2005 Hedy Dicarlo, a self-professed tomboy from South Jersey, entered and won not only Miss Congeniality, but Mrs. New Jersey. Hedy had never been in a pageant before this, nor had she ever aspired to. It was only through the encouragement of a good friend that she entered.
If you Google Hedy Dicarlo you will be bombarded with images of court proceedings and unflattering mug shots. You will read “headlines” like “Beauty Queen Gone Bad” but, do you know the real story? Have you ever heard her side? Or, do you take what you read at face value? Do you know of her Charity, “Share Your Hobby, Share Your Heart?” Do you know that she was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer in 2004? Of course you wouldn’t know those things, because no reporter has ever thought to ask.
Prior to Hedy entering the 2005 Mrs. New Jersey pageant, she lost a dear friend to leukemia and the day after her funeral Hedy immediately became ill. She was unable to keep any food down and lost almost forty pounds, mind you she didn’t have forty pounds to spare. Hedy went to doctor after doctor with no answers. One doctor even recommended she see a therapist because she might have an eating disorder. Hedy being the true Jersey girl that she was ignored that, knowing full well that she didn’t have a problem with food; she had a problem keeping the food down. Finally she was referred to a physician in NutleyNew Jersey who ran the same tests all the other doctors had ran and discovered that her gall bladder had stopped functioning. She was immediately scheduled for surgery the next morning.
A week following the surgery Hedy returned to the doctor for a follow-up appointment. It was at this appointment that she learned why her gall bladder had stopped functioning. Upon removal of the gall bladder it was discovered that it was filled with cancerous tumors and that it had actually started in the pancreas. Hedy was immediately scheduled for another surgery to remove part of her pancreas. Typically speaking pancreatic cancer has no warning signs until it is too late to do anything about it. Hedy believes, and I agree, there had been a divine intervention in her life. Had she not continued to pursue a diagnosis she would most likely not be here today.
Following this huge turn of events in Hedy’s life, she had been talking with a friend of hers, who happened to be the reigning Mrs. New Jersey at the time Elizabeth Leska, about how she wished she could get more publicity for her charity. “Beth” mentioned to Hedy that she should go out for the pageant, stating that it would give her a great “platform” for her charity. Well Hedy never having done a pageant before made a joke saying “platform…what do you mean? Shoes?” Needless to say, “Beth” was able to convince Hedy to enter. Hedy went out and bought a book on pageants and purchased a dress on EBay from Ms. Tennessee and “boom” she was ready to compete with the other ladies. I say “compete with” because that is how the contestants view the competition. It is “compete with” never “compete against.”
So, in true fairytale fashion Hedy Dicarlo won not only Miss Congeniality, but Mrs. New Jersey United States for 2005. I mention both titles because from my understanding it is a rarity for a contestant to take home both titles. Side-note Hedy was more excited to win Miss Congeniality than Mrs. New Jersey, I guess it’s a title that no one wants, but she was thrilled to have! Unfortunately the story does not end there…stay tuned.
Follow @tvfishbowl for your Television, Movie, Celebrity, Pop Culture, and Gossip scoop— TVFishBowl (@TVFishBowl) April 9, 2013