Decrowned Miss USA Leona Gage Dies At 71

Leona Gage, the OG of beauty pageant scandalites, died this weekend of heart failure. So what’s her story? In 1957, Leona was crowned Miss USA only to have her title stripped days later. The scandal? That she was married and had two children. Well, I never! Actually, the story is pretty juicy—Leona claimed to be 21 on her pageant forms but was actually 18. She’d gotten married at age 14 and had her second baby at 16. After the Miss USA scandal, she became a regular on late night television, appearing on “The Ed Sullivan Show” and several others. And we think tabloid culture is a new thing? [NY Daily News]

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