Then and Now: Caitlin Upton, Miss South Carolina Teen USA 2007

More than a decade ago, a teenager named Caitlin Upton became one of the world's first true viral sensations. This was 2007, a few years before "going viral" was a daily occurrence: There was really only one platform responsible for spreading silliness far and wide, and YouTube had only seen a handful of major moments. (For context, Upton's sudden fame came just one year after faux YouTuber "lonelygirl15" had been exposed as a hoax.)

Crowned Miss Teen South Carolina, Upton, then 18, was competing for Miss Teen USA when she infamously stumbled through the pageant's Q&A segment. Her convoluted response to a question about geographic literacy —"everywhere, like, such as" — became a globally-recognizable moment.

Although she would place third runner-up, Upton might as well have won for all the attention that would flood in. Unfortunately, nearly all of it was unwelcome, and years later, she would speak candidly with The New Yorker about the deep difficulties of navigating young adulthood with a reputation that entered each room before her.

“I definitely went through a period where I was very, very depressed. But I never let anybody see that stuff, except for people I could trust," she said in 2015. "I had some very dark moments where I thought about committing suicide."

She continued, "It was awful, and it was every single day for a good two years."

The buzz would eventually die down (and she went brunette, which curbed the immediate recognition from strangers). In addition to booking modeling gigs, she was a finalist on "The Amazing Race" in 2010. She also got married in 2016, but TMZ recently confirmed that she and her husband are finalizing their divorce.

Now 30, Upton regularly posts on Instagram, sharing photos of her travels and modeling work.

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