Gun Totin' Beauty Queen Appears On "The Tonight Show"

A former beauty queen who shot out the truck tire of trespassers on her property was back on stage as a guest on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno."

The audience greeted Venus Ramey, 82, with thunderous cheers in Friday night's broadcast.

"I always start off with a bang," said the Waynesburg, Ky., resident.

While she was feeding a horse earlier this month, Ramey thought two men were stealing from her farm in south-central Kentucky 70-acre timber farm. For some time, thieves had been breaking into a building to steal the machines to sell for scrap, she said.

Leno asked Ramey what the would-be scrap-metal thieves were doing as she blocked their vehicle at her barn and shot out a tire.

"They were probably - pardon my expression - having urinary problems," Ramey said.

Crowned Miss America in 1944, Ramey lived in Cincinnati for 30 years on and off, starting at age 14. The Withrow High School graduate returned in the 1970s to help save Over-the-Rhine's historic buildings, an effort that led to an unsuccessful bid for Cincinnati City Council in 1979.

Ramey, the first red-haired Miss America, represented Washington, D.C., where she had moved from Kentucky to work during the war.

When Leno asked Ramey where she learned how to shoot, she said, "I'm from Kentucky."

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