WASHINGTON (AP) — Counting himself among the millions influenced by Nelson Mandela, President Barack Obama on Thursday mourned the death of the anti-apartheid icon with whom he shares the distinction of being his nation's first black president.
0050 GMT: Anti-apartheid activist and fellow prisoner on Robben Island Ahmed Kathrada offered a tribute to Mandela which said, "Your abundant reserves of love, simplicity, honesty, service, humility, care, courage, foresight, patience, tolerance, equality and justice continually served as a source of enormous strength to me and so many millions of people around the world... With all the energy and determination at our command, we pledge to join the people of South Africa and the world to perpetuate the ideals and values for which you have devoted your life." Back in the United States, First Lady Michelle Obama tweeted: "We will forever draw strength and inspiration from Nelson Mandela's extraordinary example of moral courage, kindness, and humility." South Africa's one-day international cricket captain AB de Villiers saluted Mandela by tweeting, "Let us now, more than ever, stick together as a nation! We owe him that much.