Former Miss Universe New Zealand finalist Amber-Lee Friis has died, her agent in Auckland shared on Facebook earlier this week. She was 23.
“It is with immense sadness we acknowledge the sudden passing of a beautiful and talented Wahine Amber-lee Friis,” The Talent Tree wrote of the 2018 Miss Universe NZ (Miss World New Zealand) finalist. “Our sincere aroha and condolences to Amber-Lee’s family and friends. R.I.P beautiful lady.”
There are no further details at the moment. A representative for the New Zealand Police in Auckland told People that they responded to a “sudden death” on May 18 and that it had been referred to the coroner.
News of her death quickly spread throughout the New Zealand pageant circuit.
“She was a force to be reckoned with,” CEO of Miss World New Zealand, Nigel Godfrey, said on Facebook.
“She was feisty, definitely took no prisoners, but she was a beautiful soul and you 100% knew what you were getting. She was genuine, honest and she had an energy few others possess, her heart was most definitely in the right place. We liked and respected her and were very proud to call her a friend, long after the competition had finished.”
“Amber Lee turned her life, and indeed her experience with us around, and into an incredibly positive force for good. In the years since she has been loyal and supportive and we value that above anything,” Godfrey went on.
“The world is a lesser place without her in it. She had a great deal more to give and it is a dreadful tragedy that she won’t be here to realise [sic] her unlimited potential. RIP Amber Lee you have left us far, far too soon.”