Nelson Mandela was a legendary man. As a freedom-fighter, he fought for equality and justice for all South Africans regardless of race. As a politician, he successfully lead reconciliation efforts and prevented all out war in post-Apatheid South Africa. In his retirement, he was an advocate for human rights, world peace, and HIV/AIDS awareness. He was a leader, a hero, and an inspiration to many. Mandela has always been one of my heroes. I am still in awe of his story and his lasting legacy on modern South Africa. When writing my senior thesis, I spent a lot of time reading about his influence on South African politics. What is most remarkable about Nelson Mandela was that he was a charismatic and compassionate leader. While studying abroad in South Africa, it was clear that he was genuinely well loved and well respected by the vast majority of South Africans (which is pretty rare for a politician from the 90's). I can't even begin to cover all the amazing things he accomplished. He will be greatly missed.