Residents, leaders offer condolences on the passing of Mandela

Posted on: 3:52 pm, December 5, 2013, by , updated on: 03:11pm, December 7, 2013

HOUGHTON, South Africa – Nelson Mandela has died at the age of 95 surrounded by family and friends, according to South African President Jacob Zuma.

Mandela was released from the Pretoria hospital back in September where he had been receiving treatment since June for a lung infection.

The frail icon had not appeared in public for years but retained his popularity as the father of democracy and emblem of the nation’s fight against apartheid.

Mandela became an international figure while enduring 27 years in prison for fighting against apartheid, the country’s system of racial segregation.

He became the nation’s first black president in 1994, four years after he was freed from prison.

Mandela’s impact extends far beyond South African borders.

After he left office, he mediated conflicts in Africa and the Middle East.

His history of lung problems dates to his imprisonment on Robben Island and he has battled respiratory infections since then.

Quote from President Boren:

“The death of Nelson Mandela is a loss for the entire world.  I treasure the time that I had with him personally.  He was a man of tremendous moral courage.  He demonstrated a rare ability to forgive those who treated him unjustly so that South Africans of all races and backgrounds could cooperate together to build a new nation.”

Also, the Cherokee Nation is offering their condolences on Mandela’s passing.

Principal Chief Bill John Baker, with the Cherokee Nation, said in a statement, “Today we mourn with the entire world on the passing of Nelson Mandela. Few people in the history of mankind have moved and inspired people the way he did. His ideals of equality and democracy for all people and all races in his native South Africa was something he was imprisoned for and it is that struggle that gave hope to so many, regardless of race. It is a remarkable journey for a man to go from political prisoner to president. Mandela’s plight is a history that American Indians in the United States understand, as our people have faced similar adversity. His courage and humanity are the hallmarks of how he changed the world and the way we view it. We are saddened by the loss of this extraordinary man, but we are better as people for the life he lived. Tonight, the Cherokee Nation holds Nelson Mandela’s family, friends and entire country in our hearts.”

Boren, Mandela