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Boseman died at his home in the Los Angeles area with his wife and family by his side, his publicist Nicki Fioravante told The Associated Press.

Boseman was diagnosed with colon cancer four years ago, his family said in a statement.

"A true fighter, Chadwick persevered through it all, and brought you many of the films you have come to love so much," his family said in the statement.

"From Marshall to Da 5 Bloods, August Wilson's Ma Rainey's Black Bottom and several more- all were filmed during and between countless surgeries and chemotherapy. It was the honor of his career to bring King T'Challa to life in Black Panther."

Boseman had not spoken publicly about his diagnosis.

Born in South Carolina, Boseman graduated from Howard University and had small roles in television before his first star turn in 2013.

His striking portrayal of the stoic baseball star Robinson opposite Harrison Ford in 2013's "42" drew attention in Hollywood.

Boseman died on a day that Major League Baseball was celebrating Jackie Robinson day.

His T'Challa character was first introduced to the blockbuster Marvel movies in 2016's "Captain America: Civil War," and his "Wakanda Forever" salute reverberated around the world after the release of "Black Panther" two years ago.

"This is a crushing blow" actor and director Jordan Peele said on Twitter, one of many expressing shock as the news spread across social media.

"This broke me," said actor and writer Issa Rae. 

Hulk actor and Avengers co-star Mark Ruffalo said, “What a man, and what an immense talent. Brother, you were one of the all time greats and your greatness was only beginning. Lord love ya. Rest in power, King.” 

Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden shared his sadness on twitter saying “The true power of @ChadwickBoseman was bigger than anything we saw on screen. From the Black Panther to Jackie Robinson, he inspired generations and showed them they can be anything they want — even super heroes.” 

Democratic Vice Presidential nominee Kamala Harris said “Heartbroken. My friend and fellow Bison Chadwick Boseman was brilliant, kind, learned, and humble. He left too early but his life made a difference.”

Harris and Boseman were both graduates of Howard University, and his final tweet celebrated her selection as Joe Biden’s running mate.
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