The music community is mourning the loss of civil rights icon and longtime U.S. congressman John Lewis, who died Friday night (July 17) after battling pancreatic cancer. He was 80.
Following his death, many artists took to social media to remember Lewis, who was the last last survivor of the Big Six civil rights activists, a group led by Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1960s. He is best perhaps known for leading hundreds of protesters in the Bloody Sunday march in Selma, Alabama, in 1965.
“Today we have lost a heroes’ Hero.. Thank you God for John Lewis’s life of service. Let us continue to try to walk his walk of truth. Rest in Power,” Mariah Carey wrote on Twitter.
Other artists paying tribute to Lewis included Paul McCartney, Ice Cube, Lecrae, Katy Perry, Stevie Van Zandt, Herbie Hancock and Rosanne Cash.
“RIP John Lewis. Major major loss. A good friend and ally when I needed one. Absolutely one of a kind. A real hero. The last hero. Man we need him so badly right now. Fixing this mess is going to be a lot harder without him. Travel well my friend. I was lucky to have known you,” Van Zandt tweeted.
In addition to being a giant in the American civil rights movement, Lewis also enjoyed a long and successful career in politics, first being elected to the Atlanta City Council in 1981. Five years later, he won a seat in Congress.
“Congressman John Lewis has been an inspiration to so many generations of Americans and those beyond our shores for countless decades following his inspiring work with Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. over a half century ago,” Hancock tweeted in remembrance.
See more tributes to Lewis below.