Tammy Little Haynes competed in the Ms. Senior Alabama pageant 37 years after being crowned Miss Alabama in 1984. Competing for the first time in front of her kids, she was crowned Ms. Senior Alabama. She is the first woman to win both Miss Alabama and Ms. Senior Alabama.
Originally, Haynes wasn’t interested in competing in the Ms. Senior Alabama pageant. She didn’t have time to prepare. She wasn’t in the physical condition she felt was necessary. She couldn’t do this. Then, as time went on and she learned about the program, those feelings changed. She couldn’t get physically ready as much as she would like to, however, spiritually, she was ready. She’s always ready to serve others.
“I have a platform of sharing awareness of ALS and sharing with others that they have a hospice benefit. It’s a great help to people that have received a terminal diagnosis,” Haynes said. “I’ve done numerous interviews since winning this title and every time I interview, I share about [hospice care], which makes somebody else know about it. Hopefully, they will use that benefit to help them enhance their quality of life.”
In 2000, Hayne’s father was diagnosed with ALS. After he died five months later, Haynes learned about hospice benefits and what all they could’ve provided.
“We did not have hospice, we did not have help caring for him in that manner at home. Having oxygen there at the house, having a hospital bed that he could’ve rested, it would’ve been easier for him. Once I found out that there is such a thing as a hospice benefit, then I felt compelled to share with others so that it would enhance the quality of life for the patient and anyone diagnosed with a terminal disease and not seeking an aggressive treatment and also help the family,” Haynes said.
Haynes was sponsored in Ms. Senior Alabama pageant by Comfort Care Hospice, her place of work. To be able to spread her message about hospice benefits and raise awareness of ALS meant a lot, to be able to do these things under full support from her work, Haynes says that she works for a great company.
Haynes has been working to help raise both awareness and funds in search of a cure for ALS since 2010. Comfort Care Hospice is sponsoring a walk in Scottsboro on Oct. 23 at 10 a.m. to raise both money and awareness of ALS.
When she goes to Biloxi, Mississippi from Nov. 6-10 to compete in the Ms. Senior World, Haynes won’t care about winning. She’s just looking forward to using her platform to share her story and aid others in a similar situation to hers a few years ago. She’s looking forward to learning more about herself.
“It’s never too late to continue doing something that you love. I enjoyed being in the pageants years ago because I had fun, I had a great time. It was a stepping stone to a wonderful life of entertaining and traveling the world and meeting people,” Haynes said. “If you think that you cannot benefit others because of an age or number, you can. You can do a lot of things regardless of yourself. Self aside, there’s many things and many people who you can help and contribute to and be a light to.”