By Michelle OwensApril 4, 2008
Since being crowned Miss Alabama last summer, Jamie Langley has visited countless state schools and community events to promote her platform "From the Heart." She made her first trip here last week when she visited with Fort Rucker Families and Soldiers March 25-26.
During Langley's visit to post, spoke to community members and addressed the audience at the Fort Rucker Women of the Year ceremony March 26.
Her first exposure to military life here was meeting with Fort Rucker Elementary School students. During her presentation to fifth and sixth graders, she discussed the importance of making good decisions, especially when dealing with peer pressure, smoking, drinking alcohol and doing drugs.
"We all have dreams and ambitions and want to do something great, so it's important that we learn how to make good decisions," Langley said to the children. "The moment you stop dreaming is the moment you stop really living. I only have this crown for one year, but after that, I'm not going to stop dreaming. This is not a destination - I've got many things I want to do."
Afterward, the students had the chance to ask her questions ranging from her presentation, her heart-healthy platform and her experiences as Miss Alabama.
Fifth grader Tori Brown was really interested in what the beauty queen had to say.
"I learned not to make bad decisions and to make good decisions," she said. "I got to ask her what it was like to be Miss Alabama. She's nice."
Another student, sixth grader Sami Lenzmeier, also took away tips to ensure she continues to make good decisions.
"I thought (Langley's presentation) was good because she taught us about peer pressure and how to get ourselves out of bad situations," she said. "She also taught us that it's never too late to make the right decision."
Later that evening, Langley joined the Soldiers and Families from B Company, 46th Engineer Battalion for dinner at Aviators' Landing. The unit is preparing to deploy this summer. During her dinnertime appearance, Langley sang two songs, including "God Bless America."
"It's such a pleasure to be here," the Wadley, Ala., native said. "As Miss Alabama, I travel all over ... but you know, sometimes we go in (to a situation) thinking we want to be a blessing, but a lot of times we're blessed more than we can give."
Langley told her audience that she enjoyed her experience here and thanked the Soldiers and Families for their service to the nation.
"It's an honor to be among the greatest in the country. I cannot tell you enough how much I appreciate what you do - you keep the freedom and the integrity we have as Americans. It's been a great experience to be a civilian and know what these people do for us - it's amazing. I'm very thankful (for your service)," Langley said. "I wish you all the best and (when you deploy this) summer, I'll especially be thinking of you and keeping you in my prayers."
After the dinner, B Co. Soldiers said they were impressed with Langley's patriotism, support and sincerity.
Also during her visit, Langley taped several public service announcements for Fort Rucker's Command Information Channel.
The Alabama queen said she took a year-long break from college, but plans to continue her pursuit of her double major in vocal performance and broadcast journalism/public relations at Jacksonville State University after passing on her title in June.