US Vice-President elect Kamala Harris put up a heartfelt social media message about her mother on Instagram, talking about the influence she had on her life.
Harris' father was Jamaican while her mother Shyamala Gopalan hailed from India.
Sharing three photos on Instagram, Harris wrote that her mother was one of the few women of colour to have a position as a scientist at the University of California in Berkeley.
“She was all of five feet, but if you ever met her you would think she was seven feet tall. It’s because of her that I was raised in a community where we were taught to see a world beyond just ourselves. To be conscious and compassionate about the struggles of all people,” Harris wrote in the post that accompanied the photos from her childhood.
The pictures are of Harris as a baby, being fed milk by her mother, a photo of Harris and her sister Maya as children and lastly, of their mother holding the young sisters' hands standing on a pavement.
"My mother always used to say, ‘don't sit around and complain about things, do something’, " she added. “I’ve tried to follow that advice every day and live by the example she set.”
Harris is the first woman and first south Asian to become Vice-President of the United States. Harris will enter the White House in less than a week to take charge as VP.