Last week, the pageant community suffered another loss. Miss Alabama for America Strong 2021, Zoe Sozo Bethel, tragically died at the young age of 27 eight days after falling out of a third-floor window in Miami. She sustained severe brain damage that left her in a coma.
Bethel’s family took to Instagram to share the devastating news of her passing, writing in the caption, “On Friday, February 18, 2022, at approximately 5:30AM Eastern time in Miami, Florida, our beloved Zoe Sozo Bethel passed from this life into the next as a result of succumbing to her injuries.
“At this time of bereavement, effectual and fervent prayers are solicited for the family members, and the family asks that their privacy wishes be honored and respected. The family members sincerely appreciate all of the kind words and expressions of love for Zoe,” the Instagram statement reads.
Zoe touched the hearts of many people and was actively affiliated with several organizations and groups. Namely, she was the current Miss Alabama (for America Strong), a political commentator for RSBN, a Brand Ambassador for Turning Point USA, and Liberty University’s Falkirk Center. She was also a spokeswoman for Students for Life and affiliated with Project Veritas.
While the “Miami Police initially responded to the incident as a potential suicide,” her death was ruled accidental by the Miami-Dade Medical Examiner. Miami Police said, “This was a tragic accident, and no foul play is suspected,” and blunt force trauma ultimately caused her death.
Bethel is mourned by many who have been graced to know her. The Mrs. Alabama America and Miss Alabama for America Pageants issued a statement, “On February 18th, 2022, the world lost a queen…She was a light in this world and we are heartbroken over the loss of such a bright and beautiful woman. Rest in grace and love, sweet one.”
Editor-in-chief of RSBN Grace Saldana also paid homage on Twitter, stating “In loving memory of Zoe… Besides the fact that she was always incredibly stunning, I’ll always remember how convicted Zoe was in her faith in God, how dedicated she was to her beliefs in protecting life, and how much she cared for others. May she rest in peace.”
Turning Point USA recognized Bethel’s legacy on social media, stating, “We are honored to have known Zoe Bethel. She has been a pillar in the Conservative movement, always moving with grace and wisdom. She has inspired many, and her legacy will continue to touch the hearts of people everywhere. You will not be forgotten, Zoe. May she Rest In Peace.”
Students for Life shared, “Our hearts are breaking over the news of Zoe Bethel’s unexpected passing. From choosing life during her own unexpected pregnancy to sharing her story & encouraging thousands of pro-life student leaders, she has always been a shining light and fierce advocate for life.”
Unfortunately, Bethel did not have health insurance, and her family created a GoFundMe page to help aid with funeral and medical costs, in addition to helping provide resources for her daughter.