Loretta Harrington was talked into entering the Miss Showgirl competition at the Dookie Show in 1967 and, to her surprise, won. Rob McLean catches up with Loretta, now known as Loretta Whiteman, more than 40 years later.
Loretta Harrington caught the judges’ eye at the annual Dookie Show in 1967.
The youthful beauty of the then 16-year-old combined with a daffodil-yellow ensemble purchased by her mum saw the reluctant entrant declared Miss Showgirl.
Loretta (whose surname is now Whiteman, and who owns and operates Solar City Seafoods with her husband Peter) had only agreed to enter the competition after being reassured by her dad, Campbell.
Feeling some pressure from her sister, and mum Molly, Loretta said she felt somewhat better after talking with her dad, who said that if she took a change of clothes she could quickly slip back into the country show spirit once the judging was finished.
However, in a sense the plan went astray – as Miss Showgirl, Loretta had to remain at her showgirl best for the grand parade later in the day, during which she was shown-off sitting in a boat towed behind a car.
Later Loretta, who will turn 62 in January, worked first in finance, and then after buying a house in Queensland was offered a job in real estate before she was "head-hunted" for a key role in the marketing of an elite canalestate at Raby Bay, south-east of Brisbane - and it was there that she met Peter.
Loretta’s mum died in January 2001; as her dad’s health was deteriorating, she and Peter moved back from Queensland that same year, but then her dad died in December of that year.
Loretta, who said she was "never blessed with children", declares she has had a "good life"; she finds relaxation in cooking, and drives - and loves - a rather smart gold Holden Monaro.
The cause of a house fire at a vacant Shepparton house yesterday morning is under investigation.
After a tennis career spanning 62 years, of which the last 35 years have been as a coach, Yarrawonga's Jon Coleman is set to retire at the end of 2013.
The recent Kyabram Master Pairs, played over six days with crack sides from near and far, attracted some talented bowlers eager to win the prestige event.
A small kitchen fire in Campaspe Community Children’s Centre caused the centre to be briefly evacuated this afternoon.
More residents coming forward to make official complaints is behind a rise in assaults in the Campaspe region, according to police.
Kyabram Lawn Tennis Club’s annual junior singles tournament again attracted good numbers from across the district.
But have opponents given up the fight?
Reigning Murray Valley Cricket Association premier Strathmerton was far too good for Finley on Saturday, registering a 115-run victory.
Tooborac Fire Brigade visited Tooborac Primary School last Tuesday to help the school complete its bushfire emergency management plan.
Christmas is a time of giving and UnitingCare Cobram has joined forces with Target to ensure no stocking is left empty this festive season.
The official launch of the Murray Valley Industry Park facility today will see the announcement of the Deni Innovation Expo 2014 date.
SPC Ardmona, is sending eight containers loaded with $250,000 of fruit and vegetables to cyclone ravaged Philippines.
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