EDISON, NJ – Edison native, Amy Kao, Miss Stars and Stripes 2014, will make a special appearance at the Annual Edison Memorial Day Parade on May 25.

“It is so fitting that my title is Miss Stars and Stripes, how patriotic,” said Ms Kao. “I think this parade will be a really powerful and sentimental experience for me.”

Reflecting on her childhood memories of Memorial Day weekend Ms. Kao said, “As a child, I was always really excited for Memorial Day because it meant a weekend getaway on the beach or fun family gathering in the backyard.”

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However, as she grew older, she learned the significance of Memorial Day as is a day of prayer, remembrance and a day of celebrating our nation’s freedom with family and friends. “I've come to understand the meaning of Memorial Day as something so much more than a weekend of barbecues and picnics,” said Ms. Kao. “It is a day of remembering and honoring those who have served this country.”

As Miss Stars and Stripes, Amy Kao is part of the New Jersey Star Mentorship program and serves as a mentor to May Hanlon from Toms River. She will be riding in the float alongside Ms. Kao in the parade. “I am so excited to have her take part in this parade so she can understand the true meaning of Memorial Day,” said Ms. Kao.

Amy Kao has been very active since being crowned Miss Stars and Stripes, especially in her hometown of Edison. She conducted interviews with members of the New Jersey Special Olympics Swim Team, Jersey Hammerheads at special awards ceremony presented in the municipal building of the Edison Township. Amy also served as a judge for Little Miss and Master Philippines Charity to benefit victims of Typhoon Haiyan.

The title of Miss Stars and Stripes will take Amy Kao to the Miss New Jersey Pageant on June 14 in Ocean City. The Miss New Jersey Pageant is part of The Miss New Jersey Education Foundation which is a scholarship organization and part of the Miss America system.