Miss Universe finalist, 23, dies suddenly after tragic final Facebook post

A FORMER Miss Universe finalist has died suddenly after posting a heartbreaking last Facebook message.

Tributes have poured in for "feisty" Amber-Lee Friis, 23, who was raised in Auckland, New Zealand.

The Miss World New Zealand Facebook page wrote: "All of us at Miss World NZ are dreadfully sad on hearing this.

"Amber absolutely turned her contestant journey around, after an early 'wobble' she ended up as one of the most positive and supportive contestants we had.

"She overcame so much to join us in the first place and she won our admiration and respect from the get-go.

"She was a beautiful, exciting and unique person with an extraordinary energy for life. The world has lost a young woman who had so much to offer.

"Rest in Peace Amber, but you've gone too soon and we will all miss you."

New Zealand Police confirmed they attended a sudden death on Monday and the case has been referred to the Coroner.

Amber-Lee was a Miss Universe NZ finalist in 2018 and jetted to Thailand as part of the legendary pageant.

Miss World New Zealand CEO Nigel Godfrey described her as "feisty" and "genuine."

"We liked and respected her and were very proud to call her a friend, long after the competition had finished," he wrote.

"Amber-Lee turned her life, and indeed her experience with us around, and into an incredibly positive force for good."

The day before she died she posted a photo with her sister on Facebook.

"Rest In Peace Amber-Lee, you are so loved by so many people," one person wrote on her page.

"Rest in peace you Beautiful girl, I cherish every moment I spent with you till we see each other again," another added.

Amber-Lee previously told how she had been bullied at school because of her tanned skin and "slanted eyes".

Aged just 15 she moved in with her then boyfriend and studied mechanics while working in a pizza restaurant.

However she started piling on then pounds and weighed 15 stone at 16 before joining a gym and getting back in shape.

She was represented by The Talent Tree model agency who said "We've lost a beautiful young lady who is going to be sorely missed."


EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide.

It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.

It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.

And men are three times more likely to take their own life than women.

Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.

That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.

The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.

Let's all vow to ask for help when we need it, and listen out for others… You're Not Alone.

If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:

  • CALM, www.thecalmzone.net, 0800 585 858
  • Heads Together, www.headstogether.org.uk
  • Mind, www.mind.org.uk, 0300 123 3393
  • Papyrus, www.papyrus-uk.org, 0800 068 41 41
  • Samaritans, www.samaritans.org, 116 123
  • Movember, www.uk.movember.com

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