Girlfriend of Olympian Oscar Pistorius dies on Valentine’s Day

Posted at 6:16 AM, Feb 14, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-14 07:02:27-05

By Faith Karimi

(CNN) -- South African model Reeva Steenkamp was looking forward to Valentine's Day.

"What do you have up your sleeve for your love tomorrow?" the 29-year-old asked her thousands of followers on Twitter a day before. "Get excited."

She did not live to see the day.

Steenkamp died early Thursday after a shooting at the Pretoria home of Olympian Oscar Pistorius, her boyfriend.

Pistorius, nicknamed the "Blade Runner," made history when he became the first Paralympian to compete in the able-bodied Olympics last year.

Local media reported that Steenkamp was mistaken for an intruder. Police said they were aware of the reports, but could not confirm them.

Authorities said they have arrested a 26-year-old man -- the same age as Pistorius -- in connection with the shooting.

They declined to identify the suspect, but said he will appear in Pretoria magistrate court Thursday.

Capacity Relations, the agency that represents Steenkamp, also asked for more time to get the facts straightened out.

"We are in communication with people on the scene, please wait for official statements, as there is too much speculation at this moment in time," the agency said in a statement. "We will provide further information as soon as we are able to provide accurate information as to what transpired."

The model was born in Cape Town and grew up in Port Elizabeth.

She later moved to Johannesburg, where she worked for various agencies, including Toyota and cosmetics company Avon.

Steenkamp, who had a law degree, has also worked as a presenter for FashionTV in South Africa and as a FHM covergirl.

Her passion included cars and cooking, and she was set to appear in the Tropika Island of Treasure Show on Saturday, according to the show's website.

"We are deeply saddened and extend our condolences to Reeva's family and friends," the show said in a message on its website.

Tributes poured in for the model.

"So sad for Reeva Steenkamp's family and for Oscar Pistorius," Top Billing presenter Jo-Ann Strauss tweeted. "This highlights how unsafe most South Africans feel because of crime."

Fellow models also expressed their heartbreak.

"Heaven gained a beautiful angel," Lee-Ann Liebenberg tweeted.

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