South African President Jacob Zuma has announced the sad news that Nelson Mandela has died today at the age of 95.
In his address to the people of South Africa, Zuma said:
“Our nation has lost its greatest son. Our people have lost a father. Although we knew that this day would come, nothing can diminish our sense of a profound and enduring loss.”
Mandela was not only the instrumental force in ending Apartheid in South Africa, he also served from 1994-99 as the first black president elected in South African history, was the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993, and truly became an inspiration and symbol of integrity and resilience to people worldwide. He had been hospitalized with an infection since early June.
But Mandela’s influence reached beyond the world of politics as he became a pop culture icon as well, inspiring numerous feature films and TV projects, the most recent being Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, which stars Idris Elba and is based on Mandela’s autobiography.
Other notable portrayals of Mandela include ones by Danny Glover in the 1987 made-for-TV pic Mandela, Morgan Freeman in the 2010 movie Invictus, and Terrence Howard in 2011’s Winnie.
Rest in peace, sir.
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