‘She never gave up’: Friend’s heartache after Aysha’s death
A friend who is devastated to know she will never see Aysha Baty light up a room again believes she would've fought until her last breath.
Jessica Scurry still remembers the day she first met Ms Baty at Buddina State School about 20 years ago.
"I'll never forget the day they moved from New Zealand," Ms Scurry said.
"Everyone when they saw her were just like 'Oh my God, who is this girl, she is so beautiful' … and she was.
"She was beautiful inside and out."
The memory of Ms Baty is all those closest to her have left as police piece together what led to her death.
The 31-year-old woman was murdered in Nambour in the early hours of Saturday, where officers say she suffered "abhorrent" injuries.
Ms Scurry last saw her long-term friend just one week before her life was suddenly cut short.
"I had a feeling when I (heard the news) that I knew the person," she said.
"I can't explain it, to be honest. It's something that no one should ever have to go through.
"I'm struggling to come to terms with it. I keep seeing her everywhere and it's not fair."
Police said it appeared Ms Baty had been "sleeping rough" under Petrie Creek Bridge after she had left a Woombye home.
A "tough cookie" who lived through difficult situations in her life, Ms Scurry said her friend was above all a fighter.
"She never gave up, that's who she was," she said.
"She just never gave up and I know what it's like to fight your own demons and it's not easy, but she gave it her best over and over again.
"Her mum was doing everything she could to help her … it's just devastating, I've got two children of my own and it's a pain no mother should ever have to go through.
"And what she went through is a pain that no one should have to go through. I just hope she's not hurting anymore."
Ms Scurry hoped her friend's sudden death would shine a spotlight on the need for more homeless support services in the region.
"It's so close to home and I think that's the scariest part is that something so violent and so horrific has happened to someone," she said.
"I think it's really rocked the community. This has happened so close to home near our kids' schools, this is something that we have to explain to our children.
"She thought she was safe, and I hope maybe this raises awareness that we actually really need to do something and make safe places.
"There is support there, but it's not enough."
Despite her "horrific" death, Ms Scurry didn't want Ms Baty to be remembered for the last moments she spent alive.
"I know for a fact she would've fought to her very last breath," she said.
"She would have never given up."
"I don't want people assuming that she's just some homeless person that died.
"She was a beautiful person whose life was taken from her in the most violent and horrible way."
Instead, Ms Scurry wanted all to never forget the woman whose spirit had made a permanent impact on many lives.
"I hope they remember the good things," she said.
"Those eyes cut straight through your soul. They always had a sparkle, and that sparkle always shined through no matter how dark the light got, she always shone.
"No one got to say goodbye … she died all on her own.
"I hope she knows that she will always be remembered. Always."