Hundreds of miles from the Magistrate’s Court, a memorial service was held for Steenkamp in the south coast city of Port Elizabeth. Six pallbearers carried her coffin, draped with a white cloth and covered in white flowers, into the church for the private service and cremation.
Relatives recalled how the model with a law degree had campaigned against domestic violence and had planned to don black for a ‘‘Black Friday’’ protest in honor of a 17-year-old girl who was recently gang-raped and mutilated.
What ‘‘she stood for, and the abuse against women, unfortunately it’s gone right around, and I think the Lord knows that statement is more powerful now,’’ said her uncle, Mike Steenkamp.
South Africa has some of the world’s worst rates of violence against women and the highest rate in the world of women killed by an intimate partner, according to a study by the Medical Research Council, which said at least three women are killed by a partner every day in the country of 50 million.
Since the shooting, several of Pistorius’ sponsors have dropped him. On Tuesday, Clarins Group, which owns Thierry Mugler Perfumes, said it would withdraw all advertising featuring the Olympian. A cologne line with the company, called A(asterisk)Men, bears his image.
Associated Press writer Michelle Faul in Johannesburg and AP photographer Schalk van Zuydam in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, contributed to this report.
Jon Gambrell can be reached at www.twitter.com/jongambrellAP. Gerald Imray can be reached at www.twitter.com/geraldimrayAP.