The Daily Beast

Colin Powell, First Black U.S. Secretary of State, Has Died From COVID

Kenneth Lambert/AP

Colin Powell, the first Black U.S. secretary of state, has died of complications from COVID-19, his family said on Facebook. He was 84.

In a statement, the Powell family wrote that he passed away from unspecified COVID complications early on Monday morning, and added: “We want to thank the medical staff at Walter Reed National Medical Center for their caring treatment. We have lost a remarkable and loving husband, father, grandfather and a great American.”

Powell was sworn in as former President George W. Bush’s secretary of state in 2001, becoming the nation’s highest-ranking Black public official to date. He was forced to resign following Bush’s re-election in 2004 after he published faulty intelligence in order to justify the Iraq War—an act he later conceded would forever leave a “blot” on his record in office.

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