Bob Crow was a controversial figure, yet despite the slew of criticism levelled at the RMT union leader, both by the media and by Londoners, his death has prompted an outpouring of deference and respect.
At only 52-years-old, Bob Crow’s passing was sudden and unexpected, coming while the leader was still very much a political giant.
Ken Livingstone led the tributes to Bob Crow saying: “He fought really hard for his members. The only working-class people who still have well-paid jobs in London are his members.”
Bob Crow was a ferocious man. As Manuel Cortes, leader of the TSSA rail union said today: “Bob Crow was admired by his members and feared by employers, which is exactly how he liked it." Most recently Bob Crow clashed with Boris Johnson over tube strikes, in response to Government plans to revolutionise ticketing on the Underground, which means many ticket offices will have to be shut.
Twitter has been moved by Bob Crow's death, remembering his humour, his dedication and vitality.
As is fitting for a leader who saw himself as the voice of the people, here are a selection of the people themselves explaining what he meant to them.
Bob Crow was one of the last 'big figures' of the trade union movement. That in itself is a very sad state of affairs. We need unions.; Paul Bernal (@PaulbernalUK) March 11, 2014
Bob Crow refused to accept the mantra of the "race to the bottom" and he was hated for it. Honour his memory: join a trade union; Owen Jones (@OwenJones84) March 11, 2014
This is dreadful about the death of Bob Crow - a man full of passion and organisation and gloriously mispronounced words. Sad sad day.; Mark Steel (@mrmarksteel) March 11, 2014
Bob Crow memories: on night he was elected (2002) he refused to come on Newsnight, or even to phone, as was “down the pub” with RMT members; Paul Mason (@paulmasonnews) March 11, 2014
Bob Crow - a giant of the union movement. His legacy will be that he really cared. RIP. #JoinAUnion; Quins Jim (@quinsjim) March 11, 2014
Our friend and comrade Bob Crow has died aged 52. He showed the leadership that workers need to fight. Thanks Bob. Condolences to his family; Alex Gordon (@alexgordonrmt) March 11, 2014
Bob Crow got the RMT expelled from the Labour Party because he wanted individual branches to be allowed to support other ones. Respect.; Allie Renison (@AllieRenison) March 11, 2014
Bob Crow's death feels shocking. I think its that he's so currently politically active. Its like a page of Union history being ripped; Martin Lewis (@MartinSLewis) March 11, 2014
@MartinSLewis I'm in shock! I work in a ticket office & in the RMT! Totally stunned & hope we get another strong leader!; HRH (@almadonduran) March 11, 2014
@MartinSLewis it's a tragedy. So few left like him anymore. He stood up for workers in a climate when it's not popular to do so. Very sad.; gerica (@primanirules) March 11, 2014
Rest in Peace, Bob Crow. Very rarely moved by the death of public figures, but Bob Crow was a rare figure. Very sad news. Proper fighter.; christian barnacles (@CBarnacles) March 11, 2014
Unbelievable and sad news about @RMTunion GS Bob Crow passing away at only 52. He was an inspirational leader and will be sorely missed.; Emily Stewart (@EIonaSt) March 11, 2014