• John Lewis served as US representative for Georgia's 5th congressional district for over 3 decades
  • He was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer in December
  • Several of his colleagues and well-wishers took to social media to offer their condolences 

U.S. civil rights hero John Robert Lewis died at the age of 80 following a six-month battle with cancer.

Confirming the news of his demise, his family said, "It is with inconsolable grief and enduring sadness that we announce the passing of U.S. Rep. John Lewis. He was honored and respected as the conscience of the U.S. Congress and an icon of American history, but we knew him as a loving father and brother. He was a stalwart champion in the on-going struggle to demand respect for the dignity and worth of every human being. He dedicated his entire life to non-violent activism and was an outspoken advocate in the struggle for equal justice in America. He will be deeply missed."

The longtime U.S. congressman, who served as the U.S. representative for Georgia's 5th congressional district for over three decades, had announced in December that he had been diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.

“I have been in some kind of fight – for freedom, equality, basic human rights – for nearly my entire life. I have never faced a fight quite like the one I have now,” he had said at the time.

Following his demise, several of his colleagues and well-wishers took to social media to offer their condolences.

Here are few inspirational quotes by Lewis:

  • "You must be bold, brave, and courageous and find a way... to get in the way."
  • "When growing up, I saw segregation. I saw racial discrimination. I saw those signs that said white men, colored men. White women, colored women. White waiting. And I didn't like it."
  • "I would say the country is a different country. It is a better country. The signs I saw when I was growing up are gone and they will not return. In many ways the walls of segregation have been torn down."
  • "To make it hard, to make it difficult almost impossible for people to cast a vote is not in keeping with the democratic process."
  • "The civil rights movement was based on faith. Many of us who were participants in this movement saw our involvement as an extension of our faith. We saw ourselves doing the work of the Almighty. Segregation and racial discrimination were not in keeping with our faith, so we had to do something."
  • "If you're not hopeful and optimistic, then you just give up. You have to take the long hard look and just believe that if you're consistent, you will succeed."
  • "Now we have black and white elected officials working together. Today, we have gone beyond just passing laws. Now we have to create a sense that we are one community, one family. Really, we are the American family."
  • "We are one people with one family. We all live in the same house... and through books, through information, we must find a way to say to people that we must lay down the burden of hate. For hate is too heavy a burden to bear."
John Lewis spent his life getting into what he liked to call "good trouble" -- the confrontations necessary to improve American democracy