She's been called the Tinder date and the tourist. Her name is Warriena Wright and this is her story.

We know a lot about Gable Tostee, 30, from the Gold Coast. We heard a lot about him during his trial for the murder and manslaughter of Warriena Wright, 26, from New Zealand, who fell from the balcony of his 14th floor apartment in Surfer’s Paradise on August 8, 2014.

We heard him breathe a sigh of relief after he was found ‘not guilty’ on both counts yesterday in a Brisbane court. “That was hell,” he told one of his friends.

We know about the number of women he chased on Tinder. We know, through his lawyers, his account of the three hours in his apartment before Wright fell to the hard concrete below.

About Warriena, we know a lot less. She was the “Tinder date”, the “New Zealand tourist”. The girl who fell to her death. Phrases like “acting crazy” and “trying to beat him up” and “do you know how much she had to drink?” have been thrown about.

Her life has been diminished, through lawyers and media attention and harsh courtroom lighting, to a space of several hours. Three hours of a secret recording from Tostee’s phone. CCTV footage of her movements before her death. The white decoration pebbles on the floor of Tostee’s apartment. The amount of alcohol in her system. Whether or not there were choke marks on her neck.

In trying to understand what really happened in Tostee’s apartment that night, we are forgetting something extremely important.

We are forgetting that Warriena – or “Rrie” as she was known to her friends – was a real person.

A person, like you and me, who would laugh and smile and tell stories and take pictures and daydream about the future and maybe she didn’t like Mondays. Maybe she loved the smell of coffee, but hated the taste. I’m sure she and her sister had memories of cubby houses and sister arguments and borrowing-but-really-secretly-stealing each other’s clothes.

Did she like to exercise?

What was her favourite song?

Wright and Tostee on the night of her death. Image via Facebook

Her little sister Marreza faced the media a week after Warriena's death, pleading for information from the public. She described Warriena as her best friend. “We really only had each other. She looked after me and always made sure that I was okay and she was really responsible as well,” she told reporters.

She'd spoken to her sister only hours before her death. “We weren’t talking about what she was doing — I was talking about fixing her car (because) there was an oil leak."


Something so normal. So human.

In our speculation around what drove Warriena to fall off that balcony, we cannot forget that she was a daughter and a sister and friend.

In our conversations about the alcohol and violence and fear and intimidation, we cannot forget she was a young woman who's life was only beginning.

Warriena was visiting Australia to celebrate a friend's wedding. In the days before her death she held a python at Australia Zoo, went sky diving for the first time, climbed the Q1.

I will never forget you my dearest friend who I love and keep close to my heart forever.- Savana Lesa, who was with Warriena for her final days on the Gold Coast, posted on Facbeook.

Warriena Wright. Image via Facebook.

Warriena worked in the credit card division of Kiwi Bank. She lived with her family in a place called Lower Hutt, in New Zealand's North Island. It's a city on a harbour. I wonder if Warriena liked to swim.

I miss her she was a great friend. She was a strong willed gentle and passionate person - a coworker at a previous company wrote on a private Facebook page.

Marreza told the press Warriena was passionate about animal rights. She once wrote to the New Zealand government about the maltreatment of animals in her country.

“When I see an animal in pain, to me it’s exactly the same as seeing a child in pain," Warriena's letter was posted to the government's website in 2013.

Warriena was so much more than the three hours before her death. Her life means so much more than the inside of a Gold Coast apartment, a few selfies with Tostee and a murder trial.

Let's not forget her.

Let's take a minute to realise that she was human and real and imperfect and perfect. That she had friends and a family that loved her. That she had work colleagues that would stand beside her every day.

That she would have dreamed of a future. Maybe a partner. Maybe children.

That she might have laughed when she saw a dog pass in the street. That she might have come home to New Zealand from Queensland and seen her sister as she got off the plane and talked about her car's oil leak.

These are the things that have been taken away. These are the details we should remember.