Garifuna Model KEYLA BERMUDEZ Crowned 2014 Miss Guatemala World

Guatemalan Garifuna Model KEYLA BERMUDEZ.  Photo from Facebook.

Guatemalan Garifuna Model KEYLA BERMUDEZ. Photo from Facebook.

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Guatemala City, Guatemala — Buidumebei (“Congratulations/Success” in the Garifuna Language) to Guatemalan Garifuna Model KEYLA BERMUDEZ, who was crowned 2014 Miss Guatemala World on SATURDAY, May 17th 2014 at the 2014 Miss Guatemala Pageant in Guatemala City.

Garifuna Model from Livingston, Guatemala; Keyla Bermudez.  Photo from Facebook.

Garifuna Model from Livingston, Guatemala; Keyla Bermudez. Photo from Facebook.

From Livingston “La Buga” Guatemala, Keyla Bermudez is 22 years old.  She was one of three finalists competing to be 2014 Miss Guatemala.  Claudia Herrera was crowned 2014 Miss Guatemala International and was second runner-up.  Ana Luisa Montufar was crowned 2014 Miss Guatemala Universe and was the grand winner.  Miss Ana Luisa Montufar will represent Guatemala in the 2014 Miss Universe Pageant.   1

Guatemalan Garifuna Model Keyla Bermudez at The 2014 Miss Guatemala Pageant.  Photo courtesy of saidrosales.com

Guatemalan Garifuna Model Keyla Bermudez at The 2014 Miss Guatemala Pageant. Photo courtesy of saidrosales.com

Keyla Bermudez was first runner-up and will represent Guatemala in the 2014 Miss World Pageant.   2  According to wikipedia, The Miss World Pageant is the oldest surviving international beauty pageant, having been created in the United Kingdom in 1951.  The Pageant takes place in London and is one of the most publicized beauty pageants in the world.  Traditionally, the winner of The Miss World Beauty Pageant lives in London during her reign.  The winner also spends the year traveling to represent the Miss World Organization and it’s various causes.  The Miss World Beauty Pageant takes place in November.   3

The Miss Guatemala Pageant was founded in 1955 4  and in 2004, Marva Weatherborn (Marva Cecilia Weatherborn Serrano) became the first Black woman to win Miss Guatemala and represent Guatemala in the Miss Universe Pageant.  While she is not of Garifuna descent (she confirmed this  to me via personal internet correspondence), Marva Weatherborn represented the Izabal department while she competed in the 2004 Miss Guatemala Pageant and is from Puerto Barrios, Guatemala.

2004 Miss Guatemala, Marva Weatherborn.  Photo from bellezavenezolana.net

2004 Miss Guatemala, Marva Weatherborn. Photo from bellezavenezolana.net

Below is video of Guatemalan Garifuna Model, Keyla Bermudez.

 

ABOUT The Garifuna People

The Garifuna people are people of African descent (in other words, Black people) whose ancestry can be traced to Africans mixing with Carib Indians and Arawak Indians on the Eastern Caribbean island of St. Vincent.  From this fusion of race and ethnicities in St. Vincent Island, a distinct culture and language arose.  They are noted for being one of the few (only?) peoples of African descent (again, in other words, Black people) in the Americas to have maintained aspects of their ancestral culture and full use of their ancestral language for everyday use over the course of hundreds of years.

After being defeated in war with the British on St. Vincent in 1796; 1004 men,  1779 women and 1,555 children for a total of 4,338 people (mostly Black Caribs, as the Garifuna people were then known) were captured and taken to Baliceaux, a small island, a rock, basically, off the coast of St. Vincent.  This took place from July 1796 through February/March 1797.  About 2,000 Garifunas died of a mysterious and very infectious fever while living on Baliceaux awaiting their fate.   5

In early March 1797, the remaining Garifunas were loaded onto the HMS Experiment and other ships.  Once they were rounded up, the convoy were taken to a Bequia, which is another island off the coast of St. Vincent. They proceeded to go to Grenada to get water, then Jamaica for refueling, then finally Roatan, Honduras, arriving on April 12th 1797.

Finding much of Roatan unliveable, the Garifuna people petitioned officials representing Spain and it’s government (which controlled much of Central America at the time) to be allowed to move to the Honduran mainland.  Upon being allowed to move to the Honduran mainland, the Garifunas settled many towns and villages along the Caribean coast of Honduras.  They also migrated to the neighboring countries of Guatemala, Belize (then known as British Honduras) and Nicaragua over the years.

If you find the BEING GARIFUNA Website helpful and useful, please DONATE.  Every dollar donated helps keep this website in operation.

Guatemalan Garifuna Model Keyla Bermudez is 2014 Miss Guatemala World.  Photo from saidrosales.com

Guatemalan Garifuna Model Keyla Bermudez is 2014 Miss Guatemala World. Photo from saidrosales.com

Notes:

  1. http://www.missuniverse.com/
  2. http://www.missworld.com/
  3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miss_World
  4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miss_Guatemala
  5. Nancie L. Gonzalez, “Sojourners of the Caribbean: Ethnogenesis and Ethnohistory of the Garifuna” pg. 21

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