'Empowering': Filipinos thank Michelle Dee for making country proud in Miss Universe 2023

Anna Cerezo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 19 2023 04:30 PM

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MANILA — The Philippines' bet Michelle Dee concluded her Miss Universe 2023 journey in the Top 10 during the pageant’s finals night in El Salvador on Sunday, November 19, putting the country back into the semifinal round after last year’s pageant marked the Philippines’ first early exit since 2010.
But more than securing the top 10 placement, for some Pinoys, Dee’s greatest achievement was raising the bar high for Filipino talent all over the world and sparking “bayanihan spirit,” inspiring them to likewise push for excellence.
“She really did her best and that is all that matters. She really made our country proud. Sobrang empowering ng performance. It shows the Filipinos are a powerhouse,” Ken shared.
“Michelle Dee, you did very well. You made us all proud. We are so happy with your gown, your performance, you did a very good job. Congratulations,” Anthony chimed in.

The pair are among dozens of pageant enthusiasts who rallied for Dee back in Manila at a watch party several establishments in Pasay city organized, Sunday morning.
“Sobrang proud na proud kay Michelle kasi I know she really worked hard for this, a long year of preparation. Lahat ng Filipino suportado si Michelle Dee,” MJ Villadares said.
Although the beauty queen failed to enter the top 5 following the evening gown competition, Pinoys lauded her unique ensemble designed by Mark Bumgarner, which was a tribute to Whang Od, the legendary Filipina who has become an icon for preserving the rich cultural heritage of the indigenous tattoo art of the Butbut people of Kalinga.
“Grabe yung gown, sobrang unique, grabe talaga, she deserved that Top 5 but no matter what sobrang proud Philippines kay Michelle,” Neil reasoned.
“I am so proud kasi sobrang galing niya. Lalo na sa long gown competition. Sobrang ganda ng gown niya. Thank you so much, you made us so proud sobra,” John Mark Laylo added.
Jovi, who had been following Dee since her Ms World stint, says she admires Dee for using the platform to inspire and uplift others.
“I will always be proud of Michelle Dee because she really worked hard for it. It is not just about beauty, paano umapak, it is about her cause, her advocacy which is for autism awareness,” she explained.

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