Aquillia Vang is representing Nevada in this years Mrs. International Pageant. It's a platform-based competition for women who champion a cause. For Vang, it's Ronald McDonald House Charities; something that became near and dear to her heart about a decade ago.
"I had a son, Khai who was born with a rare disease; only one in two million children are diagnosed with it," Vang said. "In the course of treatment he was airlifted over 50 miles away from home so we stayed at a Ronald McDonald House."
Staying there meant they could be by Khai's side to the very end.
"Unfortunately Khai did pass away at six and a half months due to complications, but ever since then my family and I have taken the opportunity to turn something tragic in our lives and make it much better."
Vang, a registered nurse and mother of four, has been traveling the country, stopping by Ronald McDonald Houses to tell her story, listen to others and in this case, prepare a special meal.
"it's a dinner I prepared right before we found out Khai was not going to make it and we had to pull him off life support," Vang said. "This is the first time I've made this in almost ten years."
She says she's enjoyed the opportunity to give back to a charity that provides so much for so many.
"The big misconception is that McDonald's funds everything," she said. "In fact, each house has to raise an enormous amount of funds to maintain homes and serve families so they don't have to pay."
Vang will compete in the Mrs. International pageant in July.
The Reno Ronald McDonald House is always looking for volunteers, guest chefs and donations.