2020 has been marred with bad news and tragedy with the deaths of several popular Black icons.
Bryant, Lewis, and Boseman were considered leaders in their respective fields of sports, politics, and film.
These three fields are where people, particularly in the Black community have often looked for inspiration during a year of racial tension and protests against the police brutality of unarmed Black people.
But for many, the loss of another major figure such as Boseman is taking a toll.
The actor, who starred in the blockbuster superhero Marvel film “Black Panther”, shockingly died at the age of 43 in his home in Los Angeles after he privately battled colon cancer for four years.
“These are pillars in our community,” Rev. Al Sharpton said.
“In times of instability, you depend on pillars. It’s bad enough when there’s a storm outside and you hear the lightning and thunder. It gets worse when the pillars that you’re building and standing on (are) shaking. It’s like they’re chipping away at our foundation. The very building is shaking down, because the things that undergird and protect us from the storms are being removed.”
Sharpton called Boseman an important pillar that humanized several Black historical trailblazers in his roles — including color-line breaking baseball star Jackie Robinson, legendary singer James Brown and the first African American US Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall.