The civil rights icon died on Friday night (July 17) after battling pancreatic cancer. He was 80 years old.
Following his death, many artists took to social media to remember Lewis, who was the last last survivor of the Big Six civil rights activists, a group led by Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1960s.
“So much love, honor and respect for John Lewis,” tweeted Ice Cube. “Although we never met, I’ve always admired your courage. Rest In Peace Mr. Lewis. We got it from here…”
Katy Perry wrote: “Rest In Power #JohnLewis thank you for all the good you gave.”
So much love, honor and respect for John Lewis. Although we never met, I’ve always admired your courage. Rest In Peace Mr. Lewis. We got it from here… pic.twitter.com/jVrjHLKH1p
— Ice Cube (@icecube) July 18, 2020
— KATY PERRY (@katyperry) July 18, 2020
“Sad to hear the news that civil rights legend John Lewis died yesterday. He was such a great leader who fought with honesty and bravery for civil rights in America,” McCartney said.
The Beatle also called for the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, to be renamed after the congressman.
“Long may his memory remain in our hearts,” he said. “How about renaming the famous Pettus Bridge that he and Martin Luther King Jr. and others walked across in the 60s for the civil rights movement and rename it the John Lewis Bridge?!!!”
The bridge was the site of the Bloody Sunday conflict that saw police attack civil rights demonstrators as they were attempting to march to the state capital, Montgomery on March 7, 1965.
McCartney added: “Nancy and I are proud to support the NAACP and have recently donated to their legal defense fund.”
…that he and Martin Luther King Jr. and others walked across in the 60s for the civil rights movement and rename it the John Lewis Bridge?!!! Nancy and I are proud to support the NAACP and have recently donated to their legal defense fund.
— Paul McCartney (@PaulMcCartney) July 18, 2020
E Street guitarist Steven Van Zandt similarly lobbied for the Pettus Bridge to be renamed after Lewis, instead of Edmund Pettus, a former US senator and one-time grand dragon of the Ku Klux Klan.
“RIP John Lewis. Major major loss. A good friend and ally when I needed one. Absolutely one of a kind. A real hero. The last hero. Man we need him so badly right now. Fixing this mess is going to be a lot harder without him. Travel well my friend. I was lucky to have known you,” Van Zandt tweeted Saturday.
Hopefully the Edmund Pettus Bridge will be renamed the John Lewis Bridge. It should have happened while he was alive. Why we would have anything named after the grand dragon of the ku klux klan is way beyond me.
— Stevie Van Zandt (@StevieVanZandt) July 18, 2020
Former president Barack Obama tweeted: “Not many of us get to live to see our own legacy play out in such a meaningful, remarkable way. John Lewis did,” before sharing a full statement on Lewis’ death.
Not many of us get to live to see our own legacy play out in such a meaningful, remarkable way. John Lewis did:https://t.co/KbVfYt5CeQ
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) July 18, 2020
What A Day… now, John Lewis. Sometimes it’s Good to meet a Hero… I was blessed every time we met. RI POWER, Sir.#thestrugglecontinues#BLM#VOTE
— Samuel L. Jackson (@SamuelLJackson) July 18, 2020
Congressman John Lewis has been an inspiration to so many generations of Americans and those beyond our shores for countless decades following his inspiring work with Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. over a half century ago. pic.twitter.com/JBbcW0oxSf
— Herbie Hancock (@herbiehancock) July 18, 2020
We’ve rolled with a lot of bad news this year, but the death of John Lewis, a man this country barely deserved, is wrenching. ‘Where is our soul?’ He shouted on the House floor. We have to keep asking that question, in his honor. Travel safely, sir. https://t.co/RXZWCbPAne
— rosanne cash (@rosannecash) July 18, 2020
We lost a giant in the Faith. A leader in the community. A father to many. Rest in His Presence John Lewis. pic.twitter.com/VIaWaxJvBa
— Lecrae (@lecrae) July 18, 2020
Goodbye to the Honorable, in all senses of the word, #JohnLewis Few of us will make as much difference in the world as he.
— bettemidler (@BetteMidler) July 18, 2020
Rest in Heavenly peace Mr. John Lewis. Thank you for your service, for your committment to change and your courage. You did great with your time on this earth. "Goodnight sweet Prince. May flights of angels sing the to thy rest." And…pour some blessings on us down here 🙏🏿❤️ pic.twitter.com/9ZBSnLYmMa
— Viola Davis (@violadavis) July 18, 2020
At a very young age John Lewis was a fighter for civil rights for all Americans. His long career in Congress was exemplary of his commitment. May he rest in peace, although I can’t guarantee that he won’t still be fighting for the cause up there.
— Barbra Streisand (@BarbraStreisand) July 18, 2020
Thank you for your care and kindness, your advice and understanding. Will never forget what you taught me and what you challenged me to be. Better. Stronger. Bolder. Braver. God bless you, Ancestor John Robert Lewis of Troy, Alabama. Run into His arms. https://t.co/DTUEw7cJzX
— Ava DuVernay (@ava) July 18, 2020
Imagine what a man like John Lewis could’ve done for us all if he hadn’t needed to use his whole life to fight for something as simple as fairness.
— Jason Isbell (@JasonIsbell) July 18, 2020
Hillary and I were blessed by his friendship, support and wise counsel. We’ll miss him so much, but we’ll always be grateful that he lived to see a new generation of Americans take to the streets in search of his long sought “beloved community.” https://t.co/gKDuLmUMLQ
— Bill Clinton (@BillClinton) July 18, 2020
Oh how we will mourn your loss and yet strive to continue your fight for justice for us all! “We must never, ever give up! We must be brave,bold,courageous” John Lewis pic.twitter.com/bbxmQODmf1
— Angela Bassett (@ImAngelaBassett) July 18, 2020
Rip to the great John Lewis… 💪🏾✊🏾
— Ja Rule (@jarule) July 18, 2020