Nelson Mandela Dies at 95

"Our nation has lost its greatest son," said South African President Jacob Zuma, of Mandela in tonight's national address.

Photo: LSE Library via Flickr.
Photo: LSE Library via Flickr.
Nelson Mandela, a revered anti-apartheid activist and South Africa's first black president, has died at the age of 95, South African President Jacob Zuma announced this evening.

"Although we knew that this day would come, nothing can diminish our sense of a profound and enduring loss," said President Zuma, in his national address. "His tireless struggle for freedom earned him the respect of the world. His humility, his compassion and his humanity earned him our love." 

Mandela passed away on Dec. 5, 2013 at 8:50 p.m. local time, according to tonight's address.

"Our nation has lost its greatest son," Zuma said. "Our people have lost a father."

That sense of loss is echoed throughout the globe tonight, as Mandela's fight for freedom and peace extended far beyond his home country, and even as far as Dearborn.

On June 28, 1990, during a time when factories were closing and workers were losing wages and benefits, Mandela came to Dearborn with an inspiring message for blue-collar workers at the Ford River Rouge auto plant, the Motor City Muckraker reported.

“It is you who have made the United States of America a superpower, a leader of the world,” the then-71-year-old told workers. “I am a member of the UAW; I am your flesh and blood. I am your comrade.”

To see a photo slideshow of Mandela's visit to the Ford River Rouge plant, click here.

Lee Jacobsen December 06, 2013 at 02:30 AM
Nelson Mandela was a tireless advocate of his causes, and always looked to reach across the aisle for a solution to satisfy all sides. I am sure he would have approved of Michigan becoming a 'Right to Work' state, which allows workers the right and freedom in the workplace to choose for themselves whether to belong to a union or not, one of the many forms of freedom that Nelson Mandela was famous for in South Africa, and around the world.
Joseph Borrajo December 06, 2013 at 10:33 AM
Nelson Mandela is a hero of mine. So is Mahatma Ghandi. Both sought and affected change through non-violence. Another hero is Henry David Thoreau who was the architect of "Civil Disobedience" practiced by Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Ghandi. Special men in a time that required special actions. Not sure that I could endure what they did. I'm not inclined to turning a cheek for anyone. P3
Keith Otis Edwards December 06, 2013 at 02:57 PM
It's a fine thing that the Patch syndicate included a bulletin of this tragic event. You see, I have been living in a cave with no access to a radio, television, newspapers or any other media, so I didn't know that the former president of South Africa had died. Now, if only I could find a source for local news.


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