Chadwick Boseman, who embodied Black icons, dies of cancer

LOS ANGELES (AP) — First Chadwick Boseman slipped on the cleats of Jackie Robinson, then the Godfather of Soul’s dancing shoes, portraying both Black American icons with a searing intensity that commanded respect.

When the former playwright suited up as Black Panther, he brought cool intellectual gravitas to the Marvel superhero whose “Wakanda forever!” salute reverberated worldwide.

As his Hollywood career boomed, though, Boseman was privately undergoing “countless surgeries and chemotherapy” to battle colon cancer, according to a family statement announcing his death at age 43 on Friday.

He’d been diagnosed at stage 3 in 2016 but never spoke publicly about it.

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