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'A space missing inside': Family of Pistorius' partner Reeva Steenkamp holds funeral

Alexander Joe / AFP - Getty Images

Pallbearers carry the coffin of the late South African model Reeva Steenkamp into the crematorium building in Port Elizabeth Tuesday.

The funeral of model and law-school graduate Reeva Steenkamp – slain by her boyfriend Oscar Pistorius – was held in South Africa Tuesday.

As a magistrate ruled he would be prosecuted for premeditated murder, family and friends of Steenkamp spoke of their grief.

Pistorius’ lawyers have admitted he shot Steenkamp while she was in a small, locked bathroom, but claim he thought she was an intruder.

Adam Steenkamp, Reeva’s brother, spoke to reporters after the service at a 90-seat chapel in Port Elizabeth, where Steenkamp grew up.

Alexander Joe / AFP - Getty Images

A mourner at model Reeva Steenkamp's funeral holds the ceremony program Tuesday.

“There’s a space missing inside all the people that she knew,” he said.

“Everyone is sad understandably, but at certain points we were smiling whilst remembering Reeva because we only have good memories of her,” he added.

'He's a danger'
Reeva’s uncle Mike Steenkamp thanks people who had sent message of support, saying he had been “amazed” that people were “so touched by Reeva’s passing away.”

A cousin, Sharon, said that Reeva’s “love is in our hearts.”

Referring to the bail hearing Tuesday, one mourner, Gavin Venter, an ex-jockey who worked for Reeva's father, told Reuters that Pistorius should remain in jail.

"Without a doubt. He's a danger to the public. He'll be a danger to witnesses. He must stay in jail. He's already shown how dangerous he can be for what he did to Reeva," he said.

Her mother, June Steenkamp, said in an interview with The Times of Johannesburg, that her bubbly, blonde daughter was "the most beautiful person who ever lived."

"Why my little girl?" she said.

"All we have is this horrendous death to deal with ... to get to grips with," she added. "All we want are answers ... answers as to why this had to happen, why our beautiful daughter had to die like this."

Reuters contributed to this report.


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