Colin Powell, America’s first Black national security adviser, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and secretary of state, died on Monday at age 84.
Powell, who had undergone treatment for multiple myeloma, died from complications of COVID-19, his family said in a statement.
Powell served more than 40 years as an Army general, diplomat and national security adviser — a career in public service that “was emblematic of the ability of minorities to use the military as a ladder of opportunity,” The New York Times wrote.
After serving as national security adviser for President Ronald Reagan, Powell delivered a notable United Nations speech as secretary of state in 2003 that laid out the George W. Bush administration’s rationale for war in Iraq. For the rest of his life, Powell said he regretted that speech, which was filled with intelligence errors.
Mississippi leaders reacted to the news of Powell’s death on Monday.