Miss Ja Universe 2011 dies from sickle cell

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Miss Ja Universe 2011 dies from sickle cell

Miss Ja Universe 2011 dies from sickle cell

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Former Miss Jamaica Universe Shakira Martin died at a hospital in Florida last night due to complications with the sickle cell disease. She was 30 years old.

Martin’s mother, Andrea Hall, confirmed her death in a social media post earlier today. “My darling princess Shakira Aminah passed away at 12:28am from complications from sickle cell blood clots to both lungs” she said.

"Shakira was a fighter, lived her life in the moment, never became a slave to her disease. I will [keep] you posted with all the arrangements which will be both in Florida and Jamaica her favourite place in the whole world. Thanks for your support, prayers, phone calls, texts," she added in her Facebook post.

Martin had been on life support after a lifelong battle with sickle cell anaemia. When she died, she was surrounded by family and friends who gathered to bid her farewell.

The 2011 beauty pageant winner told the Jamaica Observer in an interview after her crowning that she was eager to start her sickle cell anaemia awareness campaign.

Being a sickler, Martin said she had entered the competition in hopes of getting a larger platform to increase awareness about the disease.

Both of the beauty queen's parents had the sickle cell trait which meant that they had a 25 per cent chance of producing a child with sickle cell anaemia. Although her brother only got the trait as well, she was diagnosed with the disease, which made her childhood a little difficult.

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