Rest in Power

Throughout our lives, we look at certain figures as inspiration for the type of person that we want to be. For me, one of those people is King T’Challa from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He was brought to life by actor Chadwick Aaron Boseman and, now, his family must lay him to rest after the veteran actor lost his fight against colon cancer this week.

He was only 43, but in his short life, he already told the stories of many famous African-American legends on the silver screen. As baseball vanguard Jackie Robinson in 42 (2013), funk pioneer James Brown in Get on Up (2014), and legal trailblazer Thurgood Marshall in Marshall (2017); Boseman already familiarised important black figureheads for a new generation of youth, but his depiction of King T’Challa – the Black Panther – in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is what he will be most remembered for.

Obviously, I don’t know much about Boseman’s personal life, but his public persona exuded the charisma, poise, and passion of his regal counterpart. He had been battling colon cancer for years – enduring treatment and impaired health – but continued to train, rehearse, and film as well as make countless visits to hospitals to cheer up sick children.

Boseman was T’Challa in real-life. He was a black superhero without a high-tech costume – his suit was the strength that he carried himself with throughout his final years. I, and many other people of colour, will remember Boseman as the leader that he truly was and always will be.

Rest in Power, King.


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