The U.S. Mission to Nigeria and our colleagues in the United States were deeply saddened to learn of the death of John Paul Ojaojogwu Usman. On June 25, John Paul died due to an accident while hiking near Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, where he was studying civic leadership as a 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow.
We extend our deepest condolences to John Paul’s family and friends over this tragic loss. John Paul was a rising star, devoted to the causes of sustainable development, children’s rights, and peacebuilding in Nigeria. His selection to the Mandela Washington Fellowship was a tribute to his drive, talent, and dedication to making his country’s civil society even stronger. One of John Paul’s professional mentors at Virginia Tech put it best, “While his time with us was short, he was well loved.” This young man will be remembered fondly as a great citizen ambassador of his country. We mourn his passing.