Colin Powell, the first Black US secretary of state, has died from complications after contracting COVID-19, a statement from his family has said.
His family announced his passing on Facebook and said it was ‘due to complications from Covid 19’ despite being ‘fully vaccinated’
Powell also suffered from multiple myeloma, a blood cancer that makes it difficult to fight infections even if a person is vaccinated, according to The New York Times.
“Peggy Cifrino, Mr. Powell’s longtime aide, said that he had been successfully treated for multiple myeloma, a cancer of white blood cells in the bone marrow.“
Retired four-star general Powell, who was also suffering from Parkinson’s, is survived by his wife Alma and three children.
President Bush and former First Lady Laura said on Monday they were ‘deeply saddened’ by the news of Powell’s passing.
‘Laura and I are deeply saddened by the death of Colin Powell’, they said in a joint statement. ‘He was a great public servant, starting with his time as a soldier during Vietnam.
‘Many Presidents relied on General Powell’s counsel and experience. He was National Security Adviser under President Reagan, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under my father and President Clinton, and Secretary of State during my administration.
‘He was such a favorite of Presidents that he earned the Presidential Medal of Freedom – twice. He was highly respected at home and abroad.
‘And most important, Colin was a family man and a friend.’