FILE PHOTO: Celtics' legend Russell stands with his Presidential Medal of Freedom during the NBA All-Star basketball game in Los Angeles

Boston Celtics legend Bill Russell stands with his Presidential Medal of Freedom during the NBA All-Star Game in Los Angeles on Feb. 20, 2011. Russell died Sunday at the age of 88.

Former Boston Celtics star Bill Russell, one of the sports world’s greatest winners as the anchor of a team that won 11 NBA championships, as well as the league’s first Black coach, died on Sunday at the age of 88.

Russell, a five-time Most Valuable Player who was also outspoken on racial issues, passed away peacefully with his wife Jeannine by his side, according to a statement posted on his Twitter account that did not state a cause of death.