John Lewis, a well renowned civil rights hero has passed away at the age of 80. He is also a Democratic congressman. On Friday, Nancy Pelosi, the House Speaker confirmed that Lewis has died. Lewis has been suffering from pancreatic cancer and this eventually led to his death.
John Lewis: Obituary
Barack Obama, the first African-American president of the United States said that Lewis loved his country so much that he risked his life and his blood so that it might live up to its promise. Lewis fought for civil rights to the very end of his life.
Obama further added that the last time John and he shared a public forum was at a virtual town hall with a gathering of young activists who were helping to lead this summer’s demonstrations in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
Lewis was born in Troy, Alabama in February 1940 in a sharecropper’s family. He eventually went on to become a prominent leader of the civil rights movement in the 1960s. Lewis joined the Freedom Rides in 1961 and travelled to the South by bus to fight segregation on interstate buses.
He was one of the founding members of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. Eventually, in 1963, he was nominated as the chair of the committee where he helped organize the March on Washington when Martin Luther King Jr delivered his “I have a dream” speech.
Lewis was the youngest and last survivor of the “Big Six” civil rights activists, a group led by King. He attended Obama’s inauguration in January 2009. At that time, he was the last surviving speaker from the March on Washington. Obama presented Lewis with a commemorative photograph signed “Because of you, John. Barack Obama.” In 2011 he awarded Lewis the presidential medal of freedom.
John Lewis surely was a noteworthy leader and a beautiful human being. The US has lost a great leader today and no one can compensate for this huge loss.