As America struggles and mourns for the thousands of lives that were lost because of the pandemic, an icon in the person of Rep. John Lewis has died after his six-month battle with pancreatic cancer.
The #NAACP mourns the passing of Congressman #JohnLewis, a resounding #civilrights giant. He fought harder and longer than anyone in our nation’s continuing battle for civil rights and equal justice. #GoodTroublehttps://t.co/xI9WpPpGjj— NAACP (@NAACP) July 18, 2020
In a statement last year, when he was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer, the Civil rights leader said: “I have been in some kind of fight ― for freedom, equality, basic human rights ― for nearly my entire life, I have never faced a fight quite like the one I have now.”
Lewis was widely known as part of the Big Six, a term used for the prominent African-American civil rights leaders during the 1960s. In his twenties, the Democrat who served as the US representative for Georgia's 5th Congressional District participated in the freedom rides and spoke during the March on Washington with the late Martin Luther King Jr. As a social activist, he led protests and faced left and right arrests, one noted incident was in March 1965 when he led more than 600 peaceful protesters in a voting rights protest in Selma, Alabama that became known as the Bloody Sunday, where Alabama state troopers’ fractured his skull.
During his congressional stint, he fought to pass laws and regulations to expand the civil rights and moral principles that he and the other civil rights leaders had championed since they started.
An outpouring of tribute and gratitude from prominent people on social media for the late Lion of the civil rights movement who praised him for his views on peace, justice, and equality. One of them is former US President Barack Obama who called Lewis his hero.
John Lewis will forever be remembered with his words, "Our minds, souls, and hearts cannot rest until freedom and justice exist for all the people." and as the man who, 57 years ago, fought and stood up for social justice in the shadow of the Lincoln memorial.