While 95 years of life may seem long, it’s actually a small amount of time considering just how much Mandela did with his time here on earth.
South Africa’s anti-apartheid icon was remembered as one of the world’s greatest leaders and an exceptional human being.
“Today the world lost one of its greatest leaders,” Eva Longoria tweeted. “Rest in peace Mandela…”
Jamie Foxx wrote, “Rest in Peace Mr. Nelson Mandela. A fearless leader, incredible human being, inspiration, a real hero. Truly one of a kind. God bless you.”
“One of our greatest leaders… Thank you for being the true meaning of compassion,” Justin Timberlake tweeted when he heard the news. “May you be at peace now. #RIPNelsonMandela.”
As a leader, an activist, a president, and even as prisoner, Mandela was always working to change the world and inspired millions along his tiring journey.
“He was a great leader, activist, and truly one of the most inspiring people I have ever met in my life,” P. Diddy tweeted.
“Deeply saddened by the profound loss of Nelson Mandela,” Alicia Keys wrote. “His legacy lives forever and inspires us all.”
The wisdom he gave to the world changed the course of history and while no one could ever give Mandela the thanks he truly deserves in 140 characters via Twitter, celebrities did their best to send their most sincere thanks to the man who changed the world through forgiveness.
“#RIPNelsonMandela we can’t thank u enough for all the wisdom u have given to the world! A true leader and loved by so many #rip,” Missy Elliott tweeted.
After spending a lifetime teaching forgiveness, compassion, and the importance of equality, Mandela was without a doubt one of the world’s greatest teachers.
“Nelson Mandela was an angel walking on this earth,” Russell Simmons wrote. “You were one of the greatest teachers this world has ever known. We love you and we miss you.”
In the midst of mourning, however, some stars wanted to remind their followers that we are not really saying goodbye to this extraordinary leader.
“He lives within us forever,” Tyra Banks tweeted. “We will never forget.”
Attached to her tweet was an image of a handwritten note that said, “Nelson Mandela. 95 years on this earth. You created freedom for eternity… – Tyra.”
Pictures of Mandela filled Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, with many of them sharing some of the global icon’s greatest quotes.
“No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion,” read one image posed by Sarah Hyland. “People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart that its opposite. – Nelson Mandela.”
Another image that began circulating showed a happy, laughing Mandela with the quote, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.”
Even after death his inspirational messages were shared with millions as many celebrities recalled some of their favorite lessons from Mandela.
“To be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others. – Nelson Mandela,” Channing Tatum tweeted.
“When people are determined they can overcome anything. Nelson Mandela,” Russell Simmons wrote.
“We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right. -the great Nelson Mandela,” Ryan Seacrest wrote.
Even Rihanna cleaned up her Twitter for a short while to celebrate Mandela’s life.
“One of the greatest men who’s ever lived!!!” she tweeted before adding, “#NelsonMandela you made your people proud!! We’ll always love you for it!”
Rihanna has since changed her Twitter profile image to a black and white photo of Mandela.
Many stars continued to send out their condolences throughout the afternoon including Samuel L. Jackson, John Legend, NeNe Leakes, Ludacris, Pitbull, Queen Latifah, Mike Tyson, Gabrielle Union, Kerry Washington, and many more.
While everyone had different ways of saying it, it was obvious that many were deeply saddened by his death, inspired by his life, changed by his teachings, humbled by his presence, touched by his forgiveness and hopeful that his memory will continue to change the world in the most positive way possible.