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Profile: Miss World Australia 2016 visits Phuket

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Profile: Miss World Australia 2016 visits Phuket | The Thaiger

PHUKET: Madeline Cowe, winner of Miss World Australia 2016, visited Phuket last week as part of the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s ‘Women’s Journey Thailand’ campaign. Her entourage included the runners up of this year’s competition, along with Courtney Thorpe, the winner of the 2014 pageant, and Deborah Miller, national director of Miss World Australia.

Madeline and her group went to Bangkok first, followed by Ayutthaya, Hua Hin and then Phuket. The newly crowned 23-year-old met with the Phuket Gazette at Cape Panwa Hotel to talk about her life and how she is dealing with the spotlight.

“I grew up on my parents’ cane and cattle farm in rural North Queensland. When I finished school, I decided I wanted to study law and moved to Townsville at the age of 17,” says Madeline.

When ‘Australia’s Next Top Model’ came to town, she decided to audition for it. She got through the auditions as well as the filming stages, and eventually decided to follow this lifestyle. She then moved to Sydney to model, which is also where she first tried her hand at pageantry.

“I did quite well and decided that the Miss World competition was the one for me,” she says.
Madeline is very close to her family and her eyes light up when she talks about them.

“I am very family-oriented. My family celebrates Easter and Christmas together, usually with both my mom and dad’s sides coming together for the holidays. They were all in Melbourne when I won, and I think both my sisters were in tears when my name was announced,” says Madeline.

She also managed to have an exciting time with her team in Phuket.

“We’ve been snorkeling, which was quite enjoyable,” she smiles. “We’ve been travelling through Thailand so fast, that this was the first time we got a chance to kick back and relax.”

“This entire trip has been absolutely amazing, and we’re so proud and grateful to be ambassadors here. Thailand will forever have a place in our hearts and we will happily promote Phuket and Thailand as much as we can internationally,” she says. “Everyone has been generous and amazing. I couldn’t have asked for a better trip.”

Back in Australia, Madeline is determined to make a difference. She helps raise funds for sick, disadvantaged and disabled kids for a children’s charity called ‘Variety,’ through the Miss World pageant’s ‘Beauty with a Purpose’ program.

“Our goal is to let these kids live, laugh and learn – we just want to help them be like other kids,” she says.

Madeline says she’s very excited about the upcoming Miss World 2016 competition.

“The big night’s on December 18 in Washington DC. I’ve been quite happy with what I’ve learned from previous pageants and my law training to get through to the nationals. But now that I’m going to the international competition, I’m going to focus on my speaking skills. You need to be able to think really quickly on your feet in these situations, and answer just about anything. Sometimes you get questions that are a little bit pushy and controversial and you have to know how to handle that.”

Madeline’s message for young men and women is to always go for it and never give up on chasing your dreams.

“If there’s something you want to do, you should know that you can do it. Whether it’s to be a pageant queen, doctor, lawyer or anything else, just fight for it. There weren’t many opportunities where I grew up – I could never have imagined all this before. It can happen for anybody if they believe in themselves and really try.”

— Zohaib Sikander

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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John Legend & Chrissy Teigen check out the tastes at a Korat Market

The Thaiger

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John Legend & Chrissy Teigen check out the tastes at a Korat Market | The Thaiger

American music legend, John Legend, and his Thai-American wife Chrissy Teigen headed to a Nakhon Ratchasima food market only to be surrounded by locals trying to get a quick selfie.

The army of fans surround the musician, his wife and daughter to follow them around the market in the 25 minute Facebook post. It was smiles all around but as the video wears on so does the patience of the American singer whose only protection appears to be a plain-shirt body-guard who is at least 40 centimetres taller than everyone around him (he doesn’t stand out at all).

A Thai policemen comes to their rescue and helps escort them somewhere a bit quieter.

Legend’s model wife Chrissy Teigen is seen almost wearing her dress as any number of wardrobe malfunctions appear moments away from happening throughout the video.

The family were reported to have visited a number of famous Korat landmarks during their visit to the area.

Legend performed in Bangkok in March 2018 this year as part of his Darkness and Light tour.

Live : John legend & Chrissy Teigen @ ตลาดเซฟวัน

John legend & Chrissy Teigen @ ตลาดเซฟวัน

Posted by ตลาดเซฟวัน SaveoneKorat on Tuesday, 20 August 2019

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Phuket’s lifeguards say goodbye to a champion of local beach safety

The Thaiger

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Phuket’s lifeguards say goodbye to a champion of local beach safety | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Phuket Lifeguard Service

A commemoration ceremony has been held for Prathaiyuth Chuayuan, a local Phuketian who helped drive Phuket’s first beach lifeguard services. He passed away on Friday morning after a heart attack.

He first experienced chest pains whilst delivering his daughter to school in Phuket Town on Friday morning, drove himself immediately to the Vachira Hospital nearby but succumbed to cardiac arrest around 9am.

He was 57 years old.

He worked with Australian lifesavers to help train local lifeguards and improve the skills of the Phuket’s beach enthusiasts, and finally sought international accreditation for the growing body of competent Phuket lifeguards.

The Phuket Lifeguards Service, founded and run by Prathaiyuth and his wife Witanya, saved innumerable lives each year whilst battling Provincial Hall and local government for increased funding in annual contract negotiations.

Daren Jenner, a FOT (Friend of The Thaiger) and local safety officer for the International Surf Lifesaving Association, sent a message to us expressing his deepest condolences to Prathaiyuth’s wife, family and friends.

“I had many good conversations with him over the years. He was a good-hearted man who did his best in difficult and changing circumstances. A very big loss for Phuket and the lifesaving community here. ISLA sends our deepest respect for his long commitment to ocean safety in SE Asia.”

Phuket's lifeguards say goodbye to a champion of local beach safety | News by The Thaiger Phuket's lifeguards say goodbye to a champion of local beach safety | News by The Thaiger Phuket's lifeguards say goodbye to a champion of local beach safety | News by The Thaiger

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Happy Birthday to Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, the Queen Mother

The Thaiger

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Happy Birthday to Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, the Queen Mother | The Thaiger

Today is the birthday of Her Majesty Queen Sirikit who was married to King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Following the Coronation of His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn, her son, and his marriage to the new Queen Suthida, Queen Sirikit has now been bestowed the title of Queen Mother.

Her Majesty Queen Sirikit is the daughter of His Highness Prince Chandaburi Suranath (Mom Chao Nakkhatra Mangkala Kitiyakara) and Mom Luang Bua Kitiyakara (nee Mom Luang Bua Snidwongse).

She was born on August 12, 1932.  She attended kindergarten class at Rajini School, but subsequently went to St. Francis Xavier convent school at Samsen District in Bangkok.  Her father later on became Thai Minister to France, then to Denmark and, ultimately, Ambassador to the Court of St. James in England.  Her Majesty accompanied him and continued her general education in the three countries and lastly in Switzerland.

Happy Birthday to Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, the Queen Mother | News by The Thaiger

It was while her father was stationed in Paris that she first met His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who was then studying in Switzerland but went now and then to Paris.  The chance meeting in Paris ripened into friendship and understanding.  When His Majesty met with a very serious motor accident in Geneva, Switzerland, and had to stay in a hospital at Lausanne, Her Majesty was a frequent visitor.

When His Majesty was well again and left the hospital, he was graciously pleased to arrange for Her Majesty to continue her studies at Riante Rive, a boarding school in Lausanne.  On July 19, 1949, Their Majesties were quietly engaged in Lausanne.  On March 24, 1950, Their Majesties landed in Bangkok by ship after a long absence.  On April 28 of the same year, the royal wedding took place at Pathumwan Palace.

The couple had three daughters and one son:

  • Princess Ubolratana Rajakanya (born 1951), married and divorced American businessman Peter Jensen, had two daughters and one son, their son was killed in the 2004 tsunami.
  • King Maha Vajiralongkorn (born 1952), married Suthida Tidjai just days before his Coronation this year. He has seven children from previous marriages.
  • Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn (born 1955), unmarried.
  • Princess Chulabhorn Walailak (born 1957), married Virayudh Tishyasarin, an Air Vice Marshal in the Royal Thai Air Force, had two daughters, divorced.

In 1956, King Bhumibol became a Buddhist monk for a period of time as is customary for Thai Buddhist males and Queen Sirikit served as Regent. Because of the excellent way she served as Regent, King Bhumibol gave her the style “Somdet Phra Nang Chao Sirikit Phra Borommarachininat” which would translate to Queen Regent.

Queen Sirikit is well known for her charitable work. She has been President of the Thai Red Cross Society since 1956. Through the Thai Red Cross, the Queen has been active in relief work for the many refugees from Cambodia and Burma in Thailand. The Queen took an active role in the aftermath of the tsunami disaster in southern Thailand in December of 2004. Tragically, the tsunami took the life of her grandson Bhumi Jensen, the son of her eldest daughter.

Happy Birthday to Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, the Queen Mother | News by The Thaiger

The health of King Bhumibol Adulyadej declined in his later years. The king resided at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok for several years and Queen Sirikit also moved to the hospital to be with him.

On July 21, 2012, Queen Sirikit felt unsteady and staggered while exercising at Siriraj Hospital where King Bhumibol Adulyadej resided. Doctors determined that she has suffered a stroke. The Queen was not seen in public until August of 2013 when the King was discharged from the hospital. Since then, Queen Sirikit has refrained from making public appearances.

King Bhumibol Adulyadej died on October 13, 2016, at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, at the age of 88, following several years of illness.

Mothers Day in Thailand has been traditionally held on Queen Sirikit’s birthday, and now with her new role as Queen Mother, the tradition continues.

Long live Queen Sirikit, the Queen Mother.

Happy Birthday to Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, the Queen Mother | News by The Thaiger

HM the King bestows the new role on his mother, Queen Sirikit, the Queen Mother, on the day after his coronation

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