“Queen of Versailles” Jackie Siegel credits her large family with helping her carry on since daughter Victoria’s death in June of a drug overdose.
“Everyone has been supporting each other,” Siegel said Tuesday. “We have our ups and downs. Thank God for family and friends. … It’s so hard. We all try to be strong for each other. I have my good moments and my weak moments.”
Siegel said she has “backed out of quite a lot of stuff” since losing her daughter, but she will go forward with a couple of events. She will take part in the eight-day Fireball Run starting Sept. 25. The race begins in Hartford, Conn., and ends in Cocoa Beach.
The charity event, for Child Rescue Network, calls attention to missing children. “This girl I’m trying to find, her name is Victoria as well,” Siegel said. “It made me feel good. I hope we can find this girl and help her family.”
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Siegel and her Queen of Versailles Team are looking for Victoria Joly, 13, of Orlando who was last seen June 5, 2014.
The race is “something that really matters,” Siegel said. “I heard it’s a life-changing experience in a positive way. I’m looking forward to something that kind of makes my spirits feel better.”
On Siegel’s team will be Mrs. Orlando 2015 Robin K. Wright, real estate mogul Ryan Nolen and Florida film producer Stanny Park.
People can watch the race on the Internet. “We’re allow to get the public involved,” Siegel said. “We are allowed to use social media. I’d like people on my Facebook, if they can, help me look something up.”
She will attend the Mrs. America Pageant Sept. 24 at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort, which husband David Siegel owns.
“David might jump up onstage,” Jackie said, but she is not ready to host and will sit in the front row for support. “If the camera pans to me, I’ll wave to it the same way Donald Trump does” at pageants, she added.
The family started the Victoria’s Voice Foundation to raise awareness about drug additions and help people find solutions. The Siegels will attend an Oct. 4 walk in Washington to bring attention to the issue.
“My husband is dedicating the rest of his life to saving as many lives as possible,” Siegel said. “You wouldn’t believe how many people have lost someone to drug overdoses. … David is putting so much energy into it. He’s trying to prevent families from being hurt as we are.”
She continues to shoot footage for a proposed reality series.
“My husband doesn’t want to do anything at all,” she said. “So much has changed since this happened to our daughter. I still want to do something. I want to move forward. I don’t want to live in the past. I want to try to help others. As part of the show maybe we can let people know about problems with drug overdoses and how it affected our family and what we’re doing about it.”