Reeva Steenkamp Biography

Model, Reality Television Star(1983–2013)
Reeva Steenkamp was a South African model and television personality who was shot and killed on February 14, 2013, by her boyfriend, paralympian and Olympian Oscar Pistorius.

Synopsis

Born in Cape Town, South Africa, on August 19, 1983, Reeva Steenkamp began modeling when she was in her teens. Steenkamp was shot and killed on February 14, 2013, at the Pretoria, South Africa home of her boyfriend, paralympic and Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius. Pistorius later admitted to unintentionally shooting Steenkamp, and he now faces a charge of premeditated murder. 

Early Life

Reeva Steenkamp was born in Cape Town, South Africa, on August 19, 1983, to Barry Steenkamp and his second wife, June. She moved with her family to Port Elizabeth as a child and began modeling when she was in her teens. Following her graduation from St. Dominic's Priory High School in Port Elizabeth, Steenkamp earned a law degree from the nearby Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in 2005.

Commercial Success

Continuing to model throughout her teens and 20s, Reeva Steenkamp had become one of South Africa's most sought-after models by the early 2000s, appearing in advertisements for Avon Cosmetics, Toyota, KFC, Cardinal Beer, Tiger Beer and various other mainstream brands, according to the website of talent management firm Capacity Relations. She was also twice named one of the "100 Sexiest Women in the World" by For Him Magazine and served as an ambassador for EVOX Nutrition.

In 2012, Steenkamp was recruited as a celebrity contestant for season 5 of the reality show Tropika Island, filmed in Jamaica, on which contestants compete for a monetary prize of 1 million rand ($113,500).

Tragic Murder

Tragically, on February 14, 2013, Steenkamp was found dead at the Pretoria, South Africa home of her boyfriend, famed paralympic and Olympic star Oscar Pistorius, a double-amputee sprinter. According to police reports, Steenkamp was shot and killed on morning of Valentine's Day 2013, with bullet wounds to the hip, head and one arm. Soon after her death was reported, it was announced that Pistorius was a suspect in Steenkamp's murder.

On February 19, 2013, during a hearing at the Magistrate Court in Pretoria, Pistorius admitted to shooting Steenkamp at his home five days earlier, but not intentionally. According to his testimony, he had mistaken her for a burglar and shot her through a bathroom door in his home. Pistorious is now facing a charge of premeditated murder and a maximum term of life in prison, if found guilty.

The first episode (season 5) of Tropika Island, featuring Steenkamp, aired just days after the model's death, on February 16, 2013.

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