Sister of Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters Dies at 13

Ra'eesah Manack
May 08, 2019
11:35 A.M.
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Former Miss South Africa and Miss Universe Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters took to Instagram to share the heartbreaking news that her younger sister passed away over the weekend. Her sister was only 13.


The pageant-winner and humanitarian worker revealed to her Instagram followers that her sister Franje, aged 13 passed away over the weekend. She lost her battle with a lifelong condition called Cerebellar Agenesis.

The condition means that Franje was born without a cerebellum, severely limiting her ability to walk, talk and develop the way other children her age would. The cerebellar is the part of the brain that receives information from the sensory systems, the spinal cord, and other parts of the brain and also regulates motor movements.


Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters paid tribute to her “angelic” baby sister in a devastating social media post. She also thanked her followers and fans for their “love and support”:

“Our hearts are aching beyond measure but I am grateful knowing she’s forever relieved of the pain she experienced on earth. She’s laughing, running and playing in heaven just like we always hoped she would on earth. She’s free! Thank you for all your prayers, love and support,” wrote a distraught Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters.


She posted three pictures to her account including two of the pair together and a quote from Romans in The Bible. Her partner Tim Tebow, a former NFL star and current Baseball professional, also posted a touching tribute to the late Franje. He wrote

Our loss but heavens gain. So grateful for the hope we have of being reunited with the ones we love through our Heavenly Father. Mr & Mrs. Peters and @demileighnp we are praying for you and love you so much. 

The pageant community extended their condolences to the South African model. Two former Miss Universe winners, Iris Mittenaere and Pia Wurztbach, took to the comments section of Demi-Leigh's post to show their support. The former Miss USA Sarah Summers followed suit as well.