Former Miss USA Cheslie Kryst dies after apparently jumping from building; family, friends devastated

Cheslie won the Miss USA pageant in 2019 and had been working as a correspondent for the entertainment show Extra

Cheslie Kryst. Photo: Miss Universe/Twitter
Cheslie Kryst. Photo: Miss Universe/Twitter

By Web Desk

Published: Mon 31 Jan 2022, 8:02 PM

Former Miss USA Cheslie Kryst has died after apparently jumping from a Manhattan building, New York police told the Washington Post.

According to the NYPD, her death was most likely the result of suicide.

In a statement, Kryst's family described her as "one that inspired others around the world with her beauty and strength."

"In devastation and great sorrow, we share the passing of our beloved Cheslie," the statement said.

Kryst, 30, was a lawyer and worked as a correspondent for the entertainment show Extra, a popular entertainment programme in the US. She received an Emmy nomination in 2020 for her work in Extra.

Cheslie Kryst/Instagram
Cheslie Kryst/Instagram

“Our hearts are broken. Cheslie was not just a vital part of our show, she was a beloved part of our ‘Extra’ family and touched the entire staff,” the show’s producers said in a statement.

According to a New York Post report, Cheslie lived on the ninth floor of the building and was alone when she leaped from a terrace area on the 29th floor of the Orion condominium building.

Former Miss South Carolina winner MaKenzie Divina, one of the finalists in the 2019 Miss USA pageant penned a heartfelt Instagram post on Sunday: "Cheslie I hope you knew how loved you were. I can never begin to understand how you were feeling but what I can rest with is knowing the amazing person you were and how your legacy will continue on forever.

"The impact you had on so many people, including myself, was incredible. You left people better than you found them. The world will never be the same without you. I'll love you forever. Until we meet again Cheslie".

Cheslie Kryst/Instagram
Cheslie Kryst/Instagram

Harnaaz Sandhu, who was crowned Miss Universe in 2021, also took to Instagram to convey her sorrow at Cheslie's death. "This is heartbreaking and unbelievable, you were always an inspiration to many. Rest In Peace Cheslie."

Miss Universe Organisation wrote on Twitter: "We are devastated to learn about the loss of Miss USA 2019 Cheslie Kryst. She was one of the brightest, warmest, and most kind people we have ever had the privilege of knowing. Our entire community mourns her loss, and our thoughts and prayers are with her family right now."

Kryst earned an MBA and a law degree from Wake Forest University in North Carolina. Before Kryst entered the Miss USA pageant, she worked as an attorney, providing pro bono legal work for inmates who were served unjust prison sentences, the Washington Post said.

She was a part of a group of five Black women who won the five major global beauty pageants that year, the first time ever, the Post reported.

According to Reuters, Kryst's victory in the contest was marked by her wearing her natural free-flowing curls.

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