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Some In the Corridor Remember Mandela

IOWA CITY, IA (CBS 2/FOX 28)--Mandela's legacy is being felt across the globe, including here in eastern Iowa, especially his work to throw out Apartheid.
A corridor woman was living in South Africa during that monumental change.

Carol Siviter lived in South Africa for more than 25 years before moving back home to Iowa. She says Mandela was indeed the father of a nation.

"I was actually sitting here in my lounge quilting, she said.

That's what Carol Siviter was doing when she heard the news about Nelson Mandela's death.

She says it wasn't surprising instead it was a time to celebrate.

"All the excitement. That's kind of where I'm at...I'm excited that Nelson Mandela was so revered, she said.

Carol, whose husband is South African, says she remembers living in a nation divided into four racial groups of blacks, whites, Indians and colored. That was during the years of apartheid.

"I remember seeing some behaviors of the whites that really disgusted me, said Siviter.

Siviter says that's why she showed up to cast her yes vote when a referendum was held to abolish apartheid after years of campaigns from Mandela and others.

She says even in prison, he was the face of the movement for equality.Years later, many agree.

"He provided the world hope. If you can imagine going from being jailed for 27 years to becoming president of South Africa and then becoming a statesman and he did this by unifying people, said Michael Kates, Executive Director of the African American Musuem.

"I would consider his lasting legacy and a connection here is he provided people freedom and he provided people an example that they can go off of, Kates said.

An example carol says she hopes the younger generation will use to help uplift South Africa.

"I think its well on its way to where we want it to be, she said.

Carol says she plans to visit the country this coming New Year.
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