Two of Nelson Mandela’s daughter's were in London for the premiere of the new movie about their father, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.
On the red carpet, they were asked about his health. One of his daughters said, “He’s doing well, thank you. He’s just old.”
Then came the news of his death. It reached the theater just as closing credits were rolling. There were shrieks of grief from his daughters. Prince William and his wife Kate looked somber as they left.
Prince William said “Extremely sad and tragic news. We are just reminded what an extraordinary and inspiring man Nelson Mandela was. My thoughts and prayers are with him and his family right now."
At New York City's legendary Apollo Theater in the heart of Harlem, the marquis reads: “In Memory of Nelson Mandela. He changed our world.”
Mandela's flag draped coffin was removed from his house. It was the beginning of a 10 day period of world wide mourning. Newspapers from every corner of the globe announced his death.
Colin Powell compared Mandela to American icons on the Today show. He said, "He kind of reminds me, in the experience of the United States of our Washington, our Lincoln, our Martin Luther King."
The airways are filled with tributes.
At the start of the X Factor, Simon Cowell dedicated the show to Mandela. He said, "He was an incredible man, a selfless man, and we want to send our respects and best wishes to his family. He is going to be surely missed."
On Good Morning America, the cast of Broadway’s The Lion King performed.
Samuel L. Jackson tweeted: “Never met a better man in my life than Nelson Mandela.”
Actress Charlize Theron a native of South Africa, tweeted: “There will never be words to say what I’m feeling right now. I am saddened to the depths of my soul.”
Singer Nicole Scherzinger also knew Mandela. While receiving an award from Cosmopolitan magazine in London Thursday night she mentioned singing for him at his 90th birthday.
She said, "I don't know if he liked it because afterwords he said, 'Do you know anything else?'"
Leaders from around the world are expected in South Africa for the funeral next Sunday. President Obama will attend and there's speculation that all living U.S. presidents will be there as well.
The eyes of the world will be on South Africa as it bids a sad farewell to the man who changed their country and the world.