How Miss Colorado 2011 ended up homeless

How Miss Colorado 2011 Ended Up Homeless
How Miss Colorado 2011 Ended Up Homeless

By Ryan Buxton

Former pageant queen Blair Griffith grew up in a nice house in an affluent neighborhood, but it all changed when she lost her father to prostate cancer when she was 15. Her mother, now a single parent, was so stressed that she had a heart attack. Her insurance company decided it was the result of a pre-existing condition, leaving the family to pay more than $500 a week for her medication. Eventually the family couldn't afford rent, and they were evicted.

Griffith shared her painful story of how she ended up homeless when she was seemingly on top of the world during an interview with HuffPost Live's Alyona Minkovski on Wednesday.

"I was in my early 20s, and this actually happened right after I had won the title of Miss Colorado USA back in 2011, so it was really, really hard to be sort of living this double life of being this beauty queen where everything had to seem perfect on the outside, but inside going home -- or not going home -- at night, wondering, 'Where am I going to sleep tonight?' or 'What am I going to do next?'" Griffith said.

Though she was ashamed of her story at first, now Griffith is joining forces with Start From Here, a campaign to end youth homelessness, in an effort to expose as many people as possible to the true stories of the homeless experience.

See highlights from 2014's Miss America contest:

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