Liz Black Is My ‘Miss South Carolina.’

LizBlackLizBlackbeachLizBlackTapLizBlackMrBlackIf you live in the Midlands you’re probably aware that the Miss South Carolina Pageant is happening right now.  I don’t know too much about it but have learned the competition is a week long marathon for the contestants that ends on Saturday night.

Why am I typing about it?  My niece, Elizabeth (Liz) Black is a contestant and I couldn’t be more proud.  Liz currently serves as Miss Clarendon County, and as you can see from the pics above, is representing her county and community big time.

Elizabeth was around three years old when we first met.  My favorite memory together (when she was a kid) was a Black family vacation at Surfside Beach.  It was a perfect South Carolina day, but I remember the ocean being a little rough.  Big waves notwithstanding, for whatever reason Elizabeth jumped in my arms and we took to the surf.  While the rest of the family hung out on the beach, Elizabeth let me hold her by the armpits, belly down with toes pointed towards the shore.  The waves busted her in the head and face over and over…and over and over.  This may be an exaggeration, but it felt like 500 waves crashed over us.  My arms and legs were like rubber, but we kept going.  Why?  I had Elizabeth’s complete trust, and I knew I was in one of those life snapshots I wouldn’t ever forget.   Seems I had a good hunch.  She’s now at USC, and I’m 40 and typing about it.

To this day Elizabeth and I have a special bond.  It’s one of those relationships whereby we can speak to each other through hand gestures, head movements, and eye squints.  It’s pretty cool.

If you take a look at the pics above you can see why she could easily be “Miss South Carolina.”  Of the pics, you can probably guess my favorite.   Yep, it’s the one where she’s hugging her Pappa (grandfather), Mr. Black.   What you’re looking at is the expression so many of us make when we hug this man.  As meaningful as the photo is, however, you’re not even seeing the best part;  The face on the other side.

I don’t know much about the pageant world, and don’t know how to get involved with her event this week.  That said, I’m with my niece Liz Black to be the next Miss South Carolina.  Gowns, talents, and whatever else is involved, her heart is awesome and she will make our state so proud.

You go, Liz Black!   Jennifer, Finley, and I love you so much!!

Your Uncle Franklin

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