Colin Powell dies of Covid complications

TPL | Published: 8:46 PM Oct 18 2021
World Colin Powell dies of Covid complications

Tributes are being paid to former US Secretary of State Colin Powell, who has died of Covid-19 complications aged 84.

The former top military officer died on Monday morning, his family said. He was fully vaccinated.

Powell became the first African-American secretary of state in 2001 under Republican President George W Bush.

He also sparked controversy for helping garner support for the Iraq War.

"We have lost a remarkable and loving husband, father, grandfather and a great American," the family said in a statement, thanking the staff at the Walter Reid Medical Center "for their caring treatment".

Powell had previously been diagnosed with multiple myeloma - a type of blood cancer - and Parkinson's disease, both of which may have made him more susceptible to Covid symptoms, according to US media.

George W Bush was among the first to pay tribute to "a great public servant" as well as "a family man and a friend" who "was such a favourite of presidents that he earned the Presidential Medal of Freedom - twice".

Former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair - who worked closely with Powell during the early years of the Iraq War - said he was someone of "immense capability and integrity" who was "a great companion, with a lovely and self-deprecating sense of humour".

Remembrances also poured in from prominent African American leaders. Civil rights activist Al Sharpton called him "a sincere and committed man", while members of the Congressional Black Caucus praised his "legacy of valour and integrity".

US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin, the first black man to serve in that role, hailed Powell as "a tremendous personal friend and mentor" who would be "impossible to replace".

(BBC)

TPL | Published: 8:46 PM Oct 18 2021

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