The 21-year-old dress-rental agent said her 60-year-old father Sydney Barnes left about 15 years ago, then broke off contact after learning her son wanted to be his daughter. Panwilas believes her father is now remarried and living in Laos, working as an English teacher.
Panwilas Mongkol wishes her father could have been there to see her win the Miss Tiffany Universe pageant.
“He used to come see me about once a year, but then he just stopped,” Panwilas said. “I have his number in Thailand, but no matter how many times I call, there is never an answer.”
The woman-of-the-second-category said she hopes that if Barnes learned that she’d won the Miss Tiffany Universe pageant he would be proud. “I hoped he’d congratulate me that I’d found my dream and my mother’s dream,” she said.
Panwilas said her year as Miss Tiffany Universe likely will be her last in the spotlight. She said she’d like to open a grooming salon for pets. “If people can have salons, why not animals?”