Colin Powell, the first Black U.S. secretary of state and top military officer, died on Monday at the age of 84 from COVID-19 complications, his family said in a statement.

Powell’s family noted that he was fully vaccinated.

However, Powell had multiple myeloma, a blood cancer. The blood cancer reduces the body’s ability to fight infection and puts people at higher risk for severe COVID-19.

Reggie Cecchini explains.

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