A Leader for the Ages

Through his example and his good works, Nelson Mandela remains an inspiration for young and old around the world

Mary Pfaff-Stengel

Stengel, with sons Gabriel, far left, and Anton, visits Mandela in Johannesburg in March. Stengel collaborated with Mandela on his 1994 autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom.

The year and a half I spent in South Africa working with Nelson Mandela on his autobiography--seeing him most every day--were extraordinarily thrilling and rewarding. (And add to that the fact that I met my wife there too.) When the project was over, I missed him terribly and stayed in touch as much as I could. With his 90th birthday approaching, I wanted to make sure that my two boys--each of whom boasts a Mandela-related middle name--saw the great man one more time. He was sunny and happy that morning, and spent most of the time entertaining my sons.

In addition...

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