As The World Pays Tribute, The Takeaway Remembers Nelson Mandela

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June 14, 2005: Nelson Mandela gives in Johannesburg a press conference voicing his support for President Thabo Mbeki.
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“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead,” Nelson Mandela once said.

Today, the world mourns the loss of the great Nelson Mandela, the former South African president who spent 27 years in prison and emerged to lead South Africa out of decades of apartheid. He died quietly in his home yesterday at the age of 95. 

On this day, The Takeaway remembers Mandela—a man who was all at once a peacemaker, a statesman and a champion of reconciliation with influence that reached far beyond South Africa. On this sad day filled with hope, we hear from Mandela in his own words, testimony from those touched by him, those who knew him, and those who are in his debt.

Madiba's compatriot, Denis Goldberg, served alongside Mandela throughout the anti-apartheid movement. Goldberg, a white South African, was also tried alongside Mandela in 1963. Both men, along with five others, were sentenced to four life sentences for their political activism. Goldberg says they spent 22 years in prison not dreaming of victory, fame or being president someday.

Ntshepeng Motema is a 29-year-old freelance South African journalist. Even though she only met Nelson Mandela once briefly, she—like so many other South Africans—feels like she knew him from a very young age and offers a remembrance of Madiba. 

Even though he is gone, Mandela's voice and words are very much with us. We hear from him in his own words, listening back to some of his greatest speeches.

Also weighing in is Verne Harris, who has been Mandela’s archivist since 2004. He’s the head of memory programming at the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory at the Nelson Mandela Foundation and he shares the ways Mandela's legacy will be preserved. 

Our own John Hockenberry also pays tribute to the man from a remote village in South Africa that became a symbol of justice and freedom for all people.

Help us remember Nelson Mandela by answering this: What one word best sums up Mandela? And why? Share your thoughts in the comments, tweet us or post on Facebook. You can also give us a call at 1-877-869-8253.

Photo Slideshow: The Life & Times of Mandela

South African anti-apartheid leader and African National Congress (ANC) member Nelson Mandela shown in a file photo dated 1957 posing with his second wife Winnie during their wedding.

( OFF/AFP/Getty Images )

Eight men, among them anti-apartheid leader and African National Congress (ANC) member Nelson Mandela, sentenced to life imprisonment in the Rivonia trial leave the Palace of Justice in Pretoria 16 June 1964 with their fists raised in defiance through the barred windows of the prison car. The eight men were accused of conspiracy, sabotage and treason. 

( OFF/AFP/Getty Images )
African women demonstrate in front of the Law Courts in Pretoria, 16 June 1964, after the verdict of the Rivonia trial, in which eight men, among them anti-apartheid leader and African National Congress (ANC) member Nelson Mandela, were sentenced to life imprisonment. The eight men were accused of conspiracy, sabotage and treason. 
( OFF/AFP/Getty Images )

ANC supporters pray in front of the courthouse of Johannesburg, 28 December 1956, to support 152 anti-apartheid militants, in which Nelson Mandela, during their trial. 

( OFF/AFP/Getty Images )

Jubilant inhabitants of Soweto attend a mass african National Congress (ANC) rally to be addressed by freed anti-apartheid leader and African National Congress (ANC) member Nelson Mandela at Orlando stadium in Soweto, 12 February 1990. It's the first rally Nelson Mandela is holding since his release from jail, 11 February 1990. The rally was originaly called for to celebrate the unbanning of the ANC but turned out to be a celebration for the release from jail of Nelson Mandela. 

( PHILIP LITTLETON/AFP/GettyImages )

A jubilant Sowetan holds up 11 February 1990 in Soweto a newspaper announcing the release of anti-apartheid leader and African National Congress (ANC) member Nelson Mandela, at a mass ANC rally. South African President de Klerk lifted 02 February the 30-year-old ban on the ANC and the South African Communikst Party, and 11 February, Nelson Mandela walked out of Victor Vester prison, near Cape Town, after 26 year since he was sentenced to life imprisonment. 

( TREVOR SAMSON/AFP/Getty Images )

Anti-apartheid leader and African National Congress (ANC) member Nelson Mandela addresses a rally attended by over 100 000 people at Soccer City Stadium in Soweto, 13 February 1990, as a bodyguard inspects the crowd with binoculars.

( WALTER DHLADHLA/AFP/Getty Images )

A crowd of estimated 40.000 African National Congress (ANC) supporters listen to the address of ANC President Nelson Mandela during a mass rally in Mmabatho 15 March 1994 prior to the 27 April general election. South Africans will vote 27 April 1994 in the country's first democratic and multiracial general elections. Mmabatho Stadium is a multi-purpose stadium in Mafikeng, South Africa. It is currently used mostly for football matches. The stadium holds 59,000 people and was designed and built in 1981 by a Russian construction firm. The South African general election of 1994 was an election held in South Africa to mark the end of apartheid, therefore also the first held with universal adult suffrage. 

( WALTER DHLADHLA/AFP/Getty Images )

African National Congress President Nelson Mandela sits next to an election campaign poster as he listens to an official of the ANC after he addressed some 20,000 supporters at the Soweto stadium in South Africa, 23 April 1994, three days ahead of South Africa' s all race national elections. 

( WALTER DHLADHLA/AFP/Getty Images )

Anti-apartheid leader and African National Congress (ANC) member Nelson Mandela raises clenched fist, arriving to address mass rally, a few days after his release from jail, 25 February 1990, in the conservative Afrikaaner town of Bloemfontein, where ANC was formed 75 years ago. 

( TREVOR SAMSON/AFP/Getty Images )

ANC leader Nelson Mandela and his second wife Winnie raise fists upon his release from Victor Verster prison, 11 February 1990 in Paarl. 

( ALEXANDER JOE/AFP/Getty Images )

South African Nationa Congress (ANC) President Nelson Mandela smiles 22 June 1990 in New York, raising his arms over his head as he receives applause at the United Nations. Mandela urged the U.N . to maintain sanctions against South Africa until apartheid is abolished.

( DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images )

South African anti-apartheid leader and African National Congress (ANC) member Nelson Mandela (R) shakes hands with British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher 04 July 1990 on the steps of No 10 Downing Street. Mandela is on a two day visit to the United Kingdom.

( GERRY PENNY/AFP/Getty Images )

South African National Congress President Nelson Mandela addresses 05 September 1990 in Tokoza a crowd of residents from the Phola park squatter camp during his tour of townships. 

( TREVOR SAMSON/AFP/Getty Images )

South African President Nelson Mandela visits 10 February 1995 his former cell in notorious Robben Island prison off the coast of Cape Town where he spent 19 of his 27 years in jail. 

( GUY TILLIM/AFP/Getty Images )

South African President Nelson Mandela smiles 16 July 1996 in Paris as he answers journalists' questions during his official visit to France. 

( PIERRE VERDY/AFP/Getty Images )

South African President Nelson Mandela (C) receives an 80th birthday kiss from his daughter Zinzi Mandela-Hlonhwane and international supermodel Naomi Campbell (L), at the Skukuza Game Reserve in the North Province, 16 July. In his address at a birthday lunch Mandela said 'Birthdays are a time to celebrate our lives and today I would like us to do just that' . Earlier he entertained over a thousand children most of them benefit from his Nelson Mandela Children Fund which he founded on his 77th birthday to cater for children particulary from the underprivileged communities.

( WALTER DHLADHLA/AFP/Getty Images )

South African President Nelson Mandela (C) is applauded by US President Bill Clinton (R) and Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (L) after Mandela received the Congressional Gold Medal in ceremonies 23 September on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Mandela is making his farewell visit to the US before retiring from politics in 1999.

( WILLIAM PHILPOTT/AFP/Getty Images )

South African President Nelson Mandela stands on March 27, 1998 behind the bars of the former cell where he spent 18 of his 27 years as a political prisoner on Robben Island. 

( STEPHEN JAFFE/AFP/Getty Images )

South African President Nelson Mandela (C) and his counterparts, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe (L) and Namibia's Sam Nujoma (R), shake hands after a joint pressconference in Pretoria, 05 March 1999. The three Presidents met in Mandela's official residence to discuss the crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the renewed fighting in Angola.

( ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images )

US President George W. Bush and former South African president Nelson Mandela (L) offer their condolences to the relatives of the victims of American Airlines flight 587 with 246 passengers and nine crewmembers aboard which crashed in the Queens neighborhood of New York City, November 12, 2001, in Washington, DC. 

( Manny Ceneta/Getty Images )

Nelson Mandela outside his former prison cell attends a press conference for '46664 - Give One Minute of Your Life to AIDS' on November 28, 2003 on Robben Island, off the coast of Cape Town, South Africa. The concert will take place at Greenpoint Stadium on November 29, 2003 and will benefit the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the fight against AIDS in Africa. Artists performing will include Bono, Queen, Peter Gabriel, The Eurythmics, Beyonce, Youssou N'Dour, and many other international and African musicians. It will be one of the biggest rock events ever staged in Africa and will also be the most widely distributed media event in history with a potential audience of more than 2 billion people in 166 countries.

( Paul Gilham/Getty Images )

Nelson Mandela attends a photocall ahead of tonight's '46664 Arctic' concert, at the Rica Hotel on June 11, 2005 in Tromso, Norway. The fourth concert aims to raise awareness of and funds for the global HIV/AIDS pandemic, as well as funds for South Africa with proceeds going to the Nelson Mandela Foundation. Produced by Robbie Williams, it follows 3 previous concerts held in Cape Town, George and Madrid, and Mandela is expected to make a personal plea to leaders of the G8 summit in his address. 

( Getty Images )

Former South African president Nelson Mandela is pictured during a meeting with Britain's Prime Minister Gordon Brown (not pictured) at his hotel, in central London, on June 24, 2008. Nelson Mandela arrived in Britain Monday June 23, 2008 ahead of a 90th birthday concert in his honour in London's Hyde Park. The three-hour gig on Friday, headlined by veteran rockers Queen alongside the likes of Razorlight and Simple Minds, will also support Mandela's 46664 campaign against HIV/AIDS. 

( DYLAN MARTINEZ/AFP/Getty Images )

Nelson Mandela's old prison cell on December 3, 2009 in Robben Island, South Africa.

( Shaun Botterill/Getty Images )

A picture taken on June 17, 2010 shows former South African President Nelson Mandela in Sandton. Nelson Mandela, 93, was admitted to hospital on February 25, 2012 after doctors advised specialist medical attention for a long-standing abdominal complaint. 'President Jacob Zuma wishes to advise that former president Nelson Mandela was admitted to hospital today, the 25th February 2012,' a statement from the presidency said.

( SIPHIWE SIBEKO/AFP/Getty Images )

In this handout provided by the Clinton Foundation, former U.S. President Bill Clinton (R) poses with former South African President Nelson Mandela on the eve of his 94th birthday at his residence July 17, 2012 in Qunu, South Africa. Along with his daughter Chelsea, Clinton met with Mandela for 90 minutes.

( By Barbara Kinney/Clinton Foundation via Getty Images )

A Senegalese man reads newspapers front pages paying tribute to late President Nelson Mandela are displayed at a newsstand in Dakar, Senegal, on December 6, 2013. Very few people become global icons whose passing can dominate all of the world's front pages, trigger non-stop TV coverage and invite worshipful plaudits from across the media landscape. Nelson Mandela was one. The 95-year-old's death also generated an outpouring of emotion across Twitter and other social media, demonstrating a fitting sense of global unity in praise for the anti-apartheid hero whose struggle for equality in South Africa inspired billions.

( SEYLLOU/AFP/Getty Images )

Mourners Nicole Wickstrom (R) and Anne Burrell (L) stand in front of a statue of Nelson Mandela in the Sandton district of Johannesburg on December 6, 2013. Mandela, the revered icon of the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa and one of the towering political figures of the 20th century, has died on December 5 aged 95. Mandela, who was elected South Africa's first black president after spending nearly three decades in prison, had been receiving treatment for a lung infection at his Johannesburg home since September, after three months in hospital in a critical state.

( CARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images )

The front pages of British newspapers report on the death of former South African President Nelson Mandela on December 6, 2013 in London, England. Mr Mandela was a leader that helped conquer apartheid in racially divided South Africa after being jailed for his activism for decades. He was South Africa's first black president. He died yesterday at the age of 95.

( Oli Scarff/Getty Images )

Indian Christians holds a candle in front of a portrait of South African former president Nelson Mandela as a part of his homage inside a church in Kolkata on December 6, 2013. Mandela, the revered icon of the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa and one of the towering political figures of the 20th century, has died aged 95. Mandela, who was elected South Africa's first black president after spending nearly three decades in prison, had been receiving treatment for a lung infection at his Johannesburg home since September, after three months in hospital in a critical state.

( DIBYANGSHU SARKAR/AFP/Getty Images )
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