Miss Haiti Raquel Pelissier answers on the same question asked to the top three finalists in the Miss Universe 2016 competition Monday, Jan. 30, 2017, at the Mall of Asia in suburban Pasay city south of Manila, Philippines. Miss France Iris Mittenaere was crowned the crown. AP Photo
Part-Filipino Miss Haiti wants to learn more about PH culture
Haiti’s representative in the recently concluded Miss Universe pageant said on Tuesday she was happy with her performance and runner-up finish, thanking her Filipino fans for the “unexpected” support.
Miss Haiti Raquel Pelissier, who shared she has Filipino blood from her mother’s side, said the cheers she received from the audience at the Mall of Asia Arena before the announcement of winner “really motivated” her.
“It was really loud and it really motivated me. I love the support I had. But I’m still happy that I went that far even if I didn’t win the crown, and I conquered many fears, so it made it even more rewarding,” Pelissier said in an interview with CNN Philippines’ Pinky Webb.
“I was not expecting so much support and so much love when I came to the Philippines and it was something I have never seen before anywhere in the world so I’m so blessed to be here and to have experienced this amazing journey. Thank you so much, mahal ko kayo (I love you),” she added.
Pelissier, who is leaving the country Tuesday evening, said she wants to come back to the Philippines to revisit Cebu, Baguio, and Boracay. “When we were there, we were so focused on the pageant, and I wanna see the views and everything. Since I have Filipino blood, I want to learn more about the culture,” she added.
Asked about her most memorable part of the pageant, Pelissier cited her answer in the final question round, which she said “came in the moment and from the heart.”
“In answering the last question, I felt like they discovered why I’m here and I why I’m doing what I’m doing. Because before, I’m not the person you are seeing right now. I was very reserved, someone who was very shy. And after the earthquake I learned that life is happening right now and there’s no guarantee for tomorrow if you want something. You just have to do it now,” she said.
The three finalists were asked by host Steve Harvey about what they learned from a failure, to which Miss Haiti answered: “About seven years ago I survived the earthquake. I think I’m failing myself and I was not living my dreams, yet I chose to be a very positive person and I learned a great lesson. If I am here today it is because I am living my dreams.”
Pelissier said she was happy for Iris Mittenaere of France as the newly crowned Miss Universe.
“I would be happy for anyone of us because we started this competition together, we had the same chaperones so we were always together, eating breakfast together. So I was really happy for her and I’m sure she’s going to be a great Miss Universe,” she said.
“I’m just accepting the result as it is and believe that if I am first runner-up, I have to be the first runner up. And I’m happy to be first runner up. I believe in fate. Not winning the crown may mean many other doors may open for me, so I’m just happy and waiting,” Miss Haiti added. IDL