Miss USA 1984 - New Mexico (Alamogord...

Miss USA 1984 - New Mexico (Alamogordo NM)

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Alamo 84

Alamogordo, NM

#1 Aug 2, 2009
If you are under 30 years old or moved to Alamogordo after 1985 you will not be aware that on one summer night in 1984, all the stars aligned and one young lady who represented New Mexico and Alamogordo and was crowned Miss USA. Her name was Mai Shanley. Although she was not born/raised in Alamo, she was the daughter of a Chief that was stationed at Alamogordo/Holloman for several years.
She competed in Miss America (representing Alamo) in 1983 and did not make the final 10, but the next year she competed and won Miss USA. New Mexico and Alamogordo was mentioned as she took her victory walk. Whether or not she ever returned to Alamo to visit, Alamo & New Mexico took the national stage for one night as Alamogordo residents were glued to their TVs, back when Miss USA had a big TV audience. Her accompplishment can be viewed on You Tube - Miss USA 1984 Walk and Farewell. One year later a lady from El Paso took her crown as Miss USA 1985. She proved someone living in Alamo can indeed compete on the National Stage and Win.
TDK

Tularosa, NM

#2 Aug 2, 2009
I was only 10 but it was magical for me. I remember watching the pageant on tv, and feeling so proud. I imagine many will come on here and tear her down like they did with the others but I remember how it made me feel to have someone accomplish something special from our little town.

Since: Jan 08

Kansas City

#3 Aug 2, 2009
It was even more special if you knew Mai or her family.

ALL wonderful people!

“Obama ISNT the Answer!!!”

Since: Jul 09

The Sticks

#4 Aug 2, 2009
That is probably the only thing Alamo has to be proud of in the last 30+ years.
I remember that night a little. I remember how shocked we were that she has actually won. Wonder whats she up to these days.

“Leadership is listening.”

Since: Jan 09

Casper, WY and Alamogordo, NM

#6 Aug 4, 2009
Mai Shanley Fitzgerald was a good friend of mine before she became Miss USA. When she began entering pageants, I so encouraged her to take it "all the way" as what people forget is that the pageants provide women a tremendous amount of opportunity and scholarship money along the way.

Mai did that winning the Miss Otero and Miss New Mexico crowns within the Miss America pageant system. She used those scholarship funds to help her pay for college.

After participating in the Miss America pageant, she came back more determined than ever to pursue the Miss USA crown. For the pageant naysayers, that meant working hard at toning her body, accepting that the Miss USA crown was a commercial venture, and prepping herself to earn that crown. We were all so happy when she won!

She spent her year as Miss USA representing Alamogordo and New Mexico in the most positive ways. I remember her telling me about a trip she took to Thailand that year (visiting her mother's homeland) and how she was so proud of the support she had at home in Alamogordo. She may have won the crown of Miss USA, but she didn't forget about home.

With her crown came thousands of dollars of prizes, commercial modeling contracts, and other business ventures that were offered to her after she gave up that crown. Remarkably though, she chose to marry Mark - a pilot that had been stationed at Holloman. Following the wedding, for a while she continued to do some modeling gigs and even served as a Miss USA judge a few years later.

I tried to do some follow up on Mai after Mark got reassigned. The last information I had on her was that she and Mark were living in England. I've lost touch not only with her and but her siblings Siobhan and Sean as well.

I too wish we all had a better update. I heard rumors she and Mark had a baby girl (who is probably now grown and in college). But other than that, she has slipped back into being a private citizen.

She, Siobhan and Sean were wonderful friends and I fondly remember the times we shared.
dumbfounded

Albuquerque, NM

#7 Aug 5, 2009
Didn't Siobhan also compete and win something? It seems I remember her name as well. I do remember watching the pagent and feeling so proud for her.
Psyche Daddy

Alamogordo, NM

#9 Aug 5, 2009
I saw Mai once after she was crowned Miss USA. She was riding a bike and said hello as she rode by. Seem like a nice person and of course pretty. At least she spoke up and said hello.
Alamo 84

Alamogordo, NM

#10 Aug 7, 2009
dumbfounded wrote:
Didn't Siobhan also compete and win something? It seems I remember her name as well. I do remember watching the pagent and feeling so proud for her.
I believe her younger sister also won Miss Otero or Alamogordo and went on to compete at the New Mexico Miss USA or America but did not win.
Here

Las Cruces, NM

#11 Aug 8, 2009
Mai Shanley is a Military Brat and an Overseas School Alumnus. She graduated as a member of the Class of 1981 of Woodbridge American HS in England and also attended Grade School at J.M. Wainwright School, Taiwan. New Mexico's former Miss USA left her runway 16 years ago and has spent much of her life living and working overseas.Mai Shanley of Alamogordo was a 21-year-old New Mexico State University education major when she was crowned Miss USA on May 17, 1984. She now works as the United Kingdom manager for an international wine broker and coordinates chapel music programs for two local air bases, heads the base spouse's group and sings for charity
Johnny

Lancaster, CA

#12 Aug 23, 2009
I was 13 years old when my family from Silver City, NM remember her winning the Miss USA crown. We were glued to the tv when she made the top 10 and then the top 5. we were so excited when she was announce the winner. If we could only have a second girl from NM win it again to follow in Mai's footsteps.
Larisa Smith-Cortes

Apex, NC

#13 Dec 11, 2009
I remember performing in Fiddler on the Roof with Mai and Sioban. I was in the chorus with my mom. It was so exciting when Mai won-she had a beautiful voice.(So did Sioban). Now my two boys go to school with the brother of the winner of the Miss North Carolina USA pageant!
Fact Check

United States

#14 Jul 15, 2010
ladyastronomer wrote:
I remember her telling me about a trip she took to Thailand that year (visiting her mother's homeland) and how she was so proud of the support she had at home in Alamogordo.
Thailand or Taiwan?

I thought her mother was Chinese from Taiwan?

“Leadership is listening.”

Since: Jan 09

Casper, WY and Alamogordo, NM

#16 Jul 15, 2010
Fact Check wrote:
<quoted text>
Thailand or Taiwan?
I thought her mother was Chinese from Taiwan?
Oops! You are right she was Chinese from Taiwan. I knew that. I just had a brain bumble at the time.

On that note, I've reconnected with Mai's siblings Sean and Siobhan via facebook. They have very fond memories of their time here in Alamogordo.

And Mai is being very private these days. She and her husband are living overseas and have raised a beautiful daughter.

:)
Carson Perkins

Austin, TX

#17 Oct 4, 2010
I attended New Mexico State University with Mai in 1983-1984 we were friends not close friends but friends none the less. Then she was Miss New Mexico and I enjoyed her friend ship.

I saw her compete for DREAM GIRL USA when I lived in California in 1985 I believe and said to the people I was with "HEY I KNOW HER!"

She was a very lovely lady then, caring and compassinate to all she knew.

I would love to get in touch with her but I have not been able to find an address, mailing or email, for her.

So if she sees this Mai I hope that you remember me and congratulations on all your accomplishments I am proud to say that I was once a friend of a Miss universe

Carson Perkins
Kboudoin

Auburn, AL

#19 Jan 26, 2011
I knew Mai from my Daddy's(F-15)squadron when we lived in Alamo. She married Mark Fitzgerald and I remember going to her wedding. She also happen to live up the street from me on Del Prado in Granada Hills. Her brother Sean, made me my first strawberry daiquiri for my friend and I when we were, uh...... Siobhan was the sweetest! I believe she was runner up to one of the big pageants, but can not remember which one?? I believe that Mai wore one of Vera Wang's wedding gowns for her wedding.
LadyLuck

Rio Rancho, NM

#20 Jan 26, 2011
Kboudoin wrote:
I believe she was runner up to one of the big pageants, but can not remember which one??
She was the Miss USA 1984
C S Perkins

Corpus Christi, TX

#21 Mar 14, 2011
I saw Mai once after she was crowned Miss USA. She was riding a bike and said hello as she rode by. Seem like a nice person and of course pretty. At least she spoke up and said hello.
My name is Carson Perkins and I attended to N.M.S.U. at Alamogordo with Mai and it does not surprise me in the least that she said hello as she rode by and yes she was and still is a very lovely lady.
She seemed to always have a kind word for people some say she was a little big headed, thinking she was better, after she became Miss New Mexico maybe she did but I never saw it.
I lived in Southern California and used to watch a show called DREAM GIRLS U.S.A.and I saw her on it she was as stunning looking as when I knew her in New Mexico.

If she happens to read this or any one else that knows her I would like to get in touch with her so please give her my my email address, carsonsperkins@yahoo.com and please ask her to email me if she remembers me.
Alamo PL

Alamogordo, NM

#22 Mar 14, 2011
What a trip down memory lane here as i had just moved to alamo the first time back in jan 85 as i still remember seeing her face on the billboards congratulating her as you entered alamo on u.s. 54 and u.s. 70. back then.
Art T

Plano, TX

#25 Jun 21, 2011
I remember seeing Mai and her sister at church on base. They both sang there and had gorgeous voices. I would also see them working out in the gym on base and boy was that a spectacle for me witness, considering they were beautiful and the guy to girl ratio there was like 15 to 1. LOL Personally, I thought Mai's younger sister had the better voice and was prettier too? They were always respectful and polite to everyone they crossed paths with as far as I saw.
christina paschedag

Arlington, TX

#26 Jan 14, 2012
the last time i saw the fitzgeralds was in 2003-2004 they were stationed in Okinawa, Japan on kadena airbase. we were neighbors mr. fitzgerald was a colonel i think. but i moved so i dont' know where they went next

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