Zoleka Mandela, who was the granddaughter of the renowned anti-racism icons Nelson Mandela and Winnie Madikizela Mandela, sadly departed from this world at the age of 43. Her passing occurred this past Monday, following an enduring and courageous struggle against the ravages of cancer.

Following a statement issued by her family, Zoleka was hospitalized on September 18, 2023, for continued medical care related to cancer affecting various parts of her body, including the hip, liver, lung, pelvis, brain, and spinal cord. Notable advancement of the illness, marked by lung fibrosis and the presence of several emboli, was additionally unveiled in neoteric scans

Zoleka actually passed on just one day before the birthday of her esteemed grandmother, Winnie Mandela, who would have celebrated her 87th year.

In August of the previous year, Zoleka bravely revealed that she was grappling with a formidable battle against liver and lung cancer. Her remarkable journey was vividly chronicled in her autobiography titled "When Hope Whispers," wherein she recounted her arduous 10-year struggle as a breast cancer survivor. She had earned a reputation as a beacon of hope and resilience in the realm of cancer survivors.

In the wake of her devastating diagnosis, Zoleka was faced with profound and heart-wrenching questions: "How do I find the words to convey this somber truth to my children? How can I possibly reassure them when this time, the prospect of emerging as a survivor feels uncertain? How do I offer solace when the reality is far from 'okay'? I'm confronted with my mortality... I am grappling with the profound fear of departing this world," Zoleka shared on her social media platform.

Zoleka served as a wellspring of inspiration for numerous women, embarking on continuous personal and professional reinvention. She fearlessly shared her profound experience of grief following the loss of her two children, fostering a nurturing space for healing within the community she had cultivated. Zoleka embodied a remarkable blend of her grandmother's indomitable spirit, her grandfather's resolute determination and courage, and her mother's unwavering compassion.

Describing someone of her caliber is a formidable task, for she radiated extraordinariness in myriad dimensions. Her protracted and very public battle with cancer bore witness to her unyielding spirit; even on those vulnerable days when she acknowledged her fears, she persisted in her courageous fight. Zoleka graciously opened the doors of her heart and home to us, generously allowing us to glimpse into her life and share in her joys and tribulations, especially those moments spent with her beloved children. Today, our tears are equally shed for her as well as for the cherished children she adored.

Rest on Queen