Glassing victim wins place in beauty competition

April 15, 2011 | by | 0 Comments

A model who was scarred for life after being glassed in the face has fought back to win a place in a top beauty competition.

Glassing victim wins place in beauty competition

Stunning Jo Minto, 23, was blinded in one eye after the attack, which left her needing 35 stitches.

The thug who threw his pint glass at her had been aiming at the man beside her and missed.

Facing painful plastic surgery and unable to bear seeing her own face, Jo gave up the catwalk.

But four years on the brave girl has given modelling one more shot – and is a finalist for the title of Miss Edinburgh.

She said: “For a long while I couldn’t look at myself in the mirror and when I did I just burst into tears.

“It’s been a long, tough road to go down but I finally feel I am over the attack.

“I had the confidence to go back and do what I love and I’m just so excited to be part of it all again.

“I didn’t expect it but I can honestly say that I’m happy.”

Jo was an up-and-coming model in February 2007. Having just done a major modelling campaign for clothing company Diesel, her career was about to take off.

But she was in the wrong place at a pub in Tranent, East Lothian, when Alexander Varnell launched his pint glass at the man next to her.

Jo was left with shards of glass embedded in her eye and face, which doctors took four days to remove.

In the weeks afterwards, she was taken to St John’s Hospital in Livingston where plastic surgeons worked to reshape her face.

The glass in her forehead had entered too deep to remove and had to be left under her skin.

Jo said: “I never even dreamed of being a model again. I felt like Frankenstein’s bride when I saw myself.

Glassing victim wins place in beauty competition

“After the attack, one of the worst moments was when a little girl said, mummy, what’s wrong with that lady’s face? It made me feel horrendous.”

Jo’s stitches were removed after a month but she was blinded in her eye for three years.

She forgot modelling and focused on her career in IT with British Gas. And despite her injuries, she met and fell in love with Jamie, a 25-year-old DJ, in November 2007.

The pair are now engaged and it was her fiance that pushed her to be a model again.

She started out at small charity dinner events to raise money for causes like children with cerebral palsy.

And a year ago she began taking magazine work again.

The pretty blonde, who will be left with scars across her face for life, then entered Miss Edinburgh.

Glassing victim wins place in beauty competition

The final is held tonight at the Pleasance Theatre in the capital, where the 10 contestants donned casual, evening and swimwear for the judges.

Jo has tried her best to move on from her ordeal, which saw Varndell sentenced to two years in jail after pleading guilty to reckless conduct at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

The model said:”I’m not sure how I feel about Alexander. From what I’ve heard he’s sorry and I suppose I forgive him – people make mistakes and hopefully this is one he will learn from.

“Next for me is to continue pushing on with my modelling career – looking to expand my profile and continue living the dream.

“I feel i’m a lot stronger as a person and hope that anyone who has the unfortunate experience of going through an ordeal like mine can look back like I can and be positive.

“Life goes on and I intend to live it to the full.”

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