Lotte van der Zee of Holland was a 20-year-old model and pageant queen who earned the title of Miss Teen Universe in 2017. She passed away on Wednesday after suffering from a fatal heart attack. The model had been on vacation in Westendorf, Austria, with her family. She began to feel ill suddenly and her condition quickly escalated to the point of cardiac arrest. After two weeks in a coma, Lotte was taken off of life support. Her parents, Bert van der Zee and Eugeniek van het Hul, informed her fans of her tragic death through a heartbreaking Instagram post, according to Fox News.
On February 22, Lotte’s parents issued a statement on her social media explaining why the model had been strangely absent for a few days. They said that upon showing signs of cardiac arrest, their daughter was rushed to the nearest hospital and later slipped into a coma. While doctors did everything they could, Lotte’s health crisis showed no signs of improvement. A week later, Bert and Eugeniek updated Lotte’s 170,000 Instagram followers of her condition and thanked all those who had reached out with comments and prayers. Unfortunately the prognosis wasn’t good.
— TheWrap (@TheWrap) March 9, 2019
It wasn’t until Friday that Lotte’s parents publicly announced that they had made the painful decision to take her off of life support and end her suffering.
“Our pearl, our everything passed away on Wednesday evening March 6th at 22:47. It is incredibly surreal that our dearly beloved Lotte is not around us anymore. Our hearts are truly broken. We would like to thank you all again for all the support and heartwarming messages.”
Bert and Eugeniek included a photograph of their daughter smiling while wearing a red ski outfit and having fun in the snow. Fans of the model and her many friends and colleagues were shocked to hear of her death at such a young age.
It is of course atypical for a woman so young to suffer from a heart attack. Lotte’s parents later informed the public that they intend to have tests done to determine potential factors that could have played into her death.
Plus-size model Joann van den Herik expressed her sadness over Lotte’s premature death on her Instagram page. She spoke of the girl’s kind and life-loving nature, according to New York Daily News.
“I can not understand this. Lotte was a beautiful, sweet, spontaneous girl and made this hard world a lot nicer and more enjoyable for me.”