Miss America 1971 Phyllis George forever remembered for tiara topple - Press of Atlantic City: Miss America Atlantic City

Miss America 1971 Phyllis George forever remembered for tiara topple

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Monday, September 16, 2013 7:17 pm

Miss America 1971 Phyllis George remembers the moments before she won the crown.

"(Miss South Carolina) grabbed my hand and said the Lord wants you to win and I said the Lord wants you to win," George recalled. "We were trying to be so gracious."

George won and as she was crowned there was a little trouble getting the crown on the tall Texan's head.

She had a scepter and robe. "We were so decked out. It was like 'Queen Elizabeth, move over,'" she said.

As she took her walk down the runway, she nodded to the judges and the crown came tumbling down.

"I thought you can't leave it there, so I bent down and carried it. I had flowers and a scepter in one hand and a crown in the other," George said.

"All my friends in Texas said, 'Only Phyllis this can happen to,'" George said with a laugh.

The experience taught her to not take herself so seriously and prepared her for anything.

Since then, she has held many roles including years as a sportscaster at CBS where she worked with the likes of Brent Musburger and Jimmy the Greek.

"My career started just exploding," she said.

Her interviews with sports greats like Joe Namath and Roger Staubach won her acclaim in what was very much a male domain.

"I humanized the athletes and made them people," she said.

She even covered three Super Bowls.

George later married and became the first lady of Kentucky after marrying that state's governor.

She has also written several books about Kentucky crafts as well as a motivational book.

George, now 64, is excited about coming back to Atlantic City, the place where she was crowned.

"I just want people in Atlantic City to understand how important this is to us formers," she said.

© 2016 Press of Atlantic City. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.