On the 5th December 2013 at 18:50 GMT (20:50 UCT) at the age of 95, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, South Africa's first black president and anti-apartheid icon died at his home in Houghton, Johannesburg after suffering from a prolonged respiratory infection.
Mr Mandela led South Africa's transition from white-minority rule in the 1990s, after 27 years in prison for his political activities. He had been receiving intensive medical care at home for a lung infection after spending three months in hospital.
Announcing the news on South African national TV, President Jacob Zuma said Mr Mandela was at peace. "Our nation has lost its greatest son," Mr Zuma said.
Celebrities as well as every living American president, along with foreign dignitaries ranging from Prince Charles to the Zimbabwean president, Robert Mugabe attended a huge memorial service in Johannesburg's FNB stadium on the 10th of December.
At the time of Mr. Mandela's passing away, I was in London, and as soon as news of his death arrived in London there were scenes of many people mourning and paying tributes outside the South African High Commission in London. It was a moving experience to be there and share the moment in history with many who admired Mr. Mandela's leadership and vision.
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