Barack Obama Pays Tribute To NBA Legend And Civil Rights Activist Bill Russell

Former President Obama paid tribute to civil rights activist and NBA legend Bill Russell who passed away at age 88.

Obama said:

Bill Russell’s basketball career and accomplishments will never be touched. Michael Jordan and LeBron James combined have not won as many championships as Bill Russell. As immense as his basketball legacy is, Russell spent the bulk of his life fighting for civil rights.

Former President Obama awarding Bill Russell the Medal Of Freedom:

Here is Bill Russell’s oral history for the Civil Rights Project from the Library of Congress:

Bill Russell spent his life mentoring others and giving back. People like Russell are irreplaceable, but they leave behind a legacy of lessons that we all can learn and implement to help make our nation stronger and the world a better place.

In the 1960s, Bill Russell once said, “I would rather die for something than live for nothing:”

At a time when the rights and freedoms of so many are being jeopardized and taken away in the United States, Bill Russell is a role model for the fights that are both ongoing and yet to come.