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Zozibini Tunzi remembers friend Cheslie Kryst on her 31st birthday

Published Apr 29, 2022

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Family, fans and friends of Cheslie Kryst, including former Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi, are celebrating her life on what would have been her 31st birthday.

Taking to Instagram on Thursday, Tunzi shared an adorable video of her and Kryst, strutting and having a good time on the streets of New York.

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She wrote: “Happy Heavenly Birthday my beautiful Ches.” And the caption was accompanied by a white dove carrying an olive branch and a love emojis.

According to People, Kryst’s parents April and David Simpkins recently released a statement announcing a public vigil in honour of the late beauty queen’s memory.

The event was set to take place at Fort Mill High School's football stadium in Fort Mill, South Carolina, on Thursday from 7pm.

"On April 28, Cheslie would have turned 31 years old," read the statement.

"Many have asked how best to honour Cheslie's memory on her birthday. This is an individual decision, and we would not presume to decide how any fan, friend, or former colleague should remember Cheslie or memorialise her on her upcoming birthday."

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Kryst, who has crowned Miss USA in 2019, reportedly died by suicide when she jumped from the 29th floor of her Midtown apartment building in New York City on January 30.

Shortly before her tragic passing, Kryst had left the following message on Instagram: "May this day bring you rest and peace."

Kryst was also an attorney and a correspondent for the American entertainment show Extra, where she interviewed Hollywood A-listers on the red carpet.

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Tunzi was left shattered following the passing of Kryst. They met in the United States, where they were participating in the 2019 Miss Universe pageant.

“Cheslie my friend, I am devastated. I didn't sleep a wink, caught in between not believing the news and trying to make sense of what is happening. You were supposed to send me photos of the outfit you were going to wear to a wedding this past Saturday and all the details that happened at the event. You took me by surprise, Queen. I am not ready for a world you don't exist in,” shared Tunzi.

“I hope you are resting easy now love.You meant everything to so many people and you forever will. You made a mark in this World and touched so many lives. We celebrate your life. I love you so, so much my forever friend and forever Miss USA RIP beautiful.”

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Below are some the duo’s most unforgettable together.

Tunzi teaching Krsyt how to speak African languages. Krsyt scored herself a South Africa “Chwayita.”

“Masked dinner date with my girl! Lol I promise we were smiling 😂😂“ shared Kryst.

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