The step-grandmother of the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama, Sarah, died at 99 in Kenya, CNN reports.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta called the death of Obama’s grandmother a big blow to the nation. “We lost a strong, virtuous woman, a matriarch, who held the Obama family together and was an icon of family values,” he said.
Sarah Obama was born in 1922, she is the third wife of Barack Obama’s paternal grandfather, but she is not a blood relative of the former owner of the White House. The Kenyan woman helped educate the former head of state’s father and worked as a cook for British missionaries in Kenya.
The woman was Muslim, so her funeral will be held according to Islamic traditions on Tuesday, March 30.
Obama visited his adoptive grandmother in 2015 during his first presidential visit to Kenya, and then in 2018, when he stepped down as head of state. In his 1995 memoir, My Father’s Dreams, the politician referred to her as “granny.”