For years, Nastasia Urbano felt like she was at the top of the world. She was young and beautiful with a job and social life that made her the envy of many women.
Urbano dominated the modeling industry in the early 80s, starring in campaigns for the world’s biggest brands, appearing on the cover of magazines like Vogue, and rubbing shoulders with Hollywood’s Who’s Who.
“I did all the magazines, I was loved by everybody. I was given a million dollars a year for only 20 days of work, for three or four years,” Urbano, now 57, told Spanish outlet el Periódico.
“I was having dinner one day with Jack Nicholson, the following day with Andy Warhol or even Roman Polanski or Harrison Ford,” she continued. “I was in parties with Melanie Griffith, Don Johnson, and Simon and Garfunkel.”
She revealed that she even planned to attend Madonna and Sean Penn’s wedding in 1985 as actor David Keith’s date.
“I had everything, I was living like a queen,” Urbano recalled.
Unfortunately, Urbano’s world changed completely after she split from her ex-husband, who walked away with all her money.
“The only good thing from that relationship has been my children, the rest was horrible,” she said. “He paid for everything with my money. Only two days after knowing him, he wanted me to buy a BMW and I, like a fool, I signed a cheque. I was in love.”
Now, the former beauty queen calls the streets of Spain home, sleeping in bank foyers and battling depression.
Urbano admitted that she isn’t comfortable being a burden on her two children and friends, so even though they’ve offered to help, she finds it hard to accept that times.
“Now I’m [staying] at the house of a friend, Toni, who is an angel,” she continued. “But I can not settle there, it’s always for a while. In a few days, when I leave that house… I’ll be with my cart, my four things and [wonder] where I’m going to sleep… I want to live, not survive.”
Urbano explained that she’s speaking out now because she’s “tired of surviving and asking for money.” She also wants her children to see their mother doing well again.
“I want to recover as a person to be okay, so they can be proud of me,” she said. “They are adults and they have their lives and they do what they can for me, but I try not to disturb them.”
Now that her heartbreaking story has spread like wildfire, Urbano’s former colleagues are offering to lend a hand.
“It has left me in shock. Nobody expected this. We were at princess level, but she, she was at goddess level,” former model Ruth Sculer said. “I remember her as an introverted person, very beautiful and very generous with others. We are gathering more people. The first thing is to talk to her, know how she is and what she needs.”
Hernando Herrera, also a former model, still sees potential in Urbano.
“She has lot of things to give to the fashion world,” she said. “She could do a lot of things, not only model, but also conferences, fashion speeches and other activities. I am ready to teach her and talk with photographers and agencies so that she can work again.”