by Photo from Twitter / @Pele

Soccer's first global icon, Pelé, has died at the age of 82 in São Paulo, Brazil. 

On Thursday, Kely Nascimento, Pele's daughter, took to Instagram to publish a goodbye publication with a photo of family members holdings hands with the soccer legend in a formation of unity. 

“Everything that we are, is thanks to you,” his daughter Kely Nascimento wrote in her post. “We love you infinitely. Rest in peace.”

This devastating news for the sporting world comes month after he was admitted to a São Paulo hospital in late November, due to a respiratory illness and for colon cancer-related complications.

According to the hospital where he was admitted, the death was a result of multiple organ failures linked to the advanced stages of the colon cancer.

This passing also comes just over two years after Diego Maradona, another all-time soccer legend, passed away in November of 2020 due to a cardiac arrest in his home country of Argentina. 

In a span of two years, the sport of soccer has lost two of its biggest legends of the 20th century.

Pele, however, was more than just the first legendary player with three FIFA World Cups. The Brazilian was the first face of the sport throughout the world. He was the first name that was immediately recognizable even to people who weren't necessarily soccer fans to begin with. 

There's a famous statement that the late-great American visual artist, Andy Warhol, was known for: 15 minutes of fame

When the legendary Soccer player arrived in the U.S. in 1975 to play for the New York Cosmos, he became great friends with Andy Warhol, and that's when the American visual artist provided one of the most memorable quotes on Pele that summed up the impact Pele had not only in the sport of soccer, but in culture and society alike. 

"Pele was one of the few who contradicted my theory: instead of 15 minutes of fame, he will have 15 centuries", Andy Warhol said.

Current Brazilian soccer superstar, Neymar, took to Twitter to elaborate on the unique significance that Pele had on the soccer field and the transformation he caused on the "beautiful game".

“Pelé changed everything. He transformed football into art, entertainment,” Neymar, said on Instagram. “Football and Brazil elevated their standing thanks to the King! He is gone, but his magic will endure. Pelé is eternal!”

Due to the lack of statistics documentation back when Pele was at the peak of his career, it is believed that he scored anywhere between 650 and 1,281 goals as a professional soccer player. 

1958 in Sweden, 1962 in Chile, and 1970 in Mexico. 

Pele became the first player to win a total of three World Cups, a title that is still attached to his name today, nearly five decades after he won his third in Mexico City. 

After Diego Maradona died two years ago, Pele shared a choice of words with the media, words that soccer fans around the world remember more than ever today.

"For sure, one day we will kick a ball together in heaven," he said. 

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