8:58 am ET, December 19, 2023
Sandra Day O’Connor Dies at 93 Due to Complications of “Advanced Dementia,” SCOTUS Says
From CNN’s Ariane de Vogue
Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call/Getty Images/File
Ex Judge Sandra Day O’ConnorThe first woman to sit on the Supreme Court died on December 1, the court announced.
O’Connor, 93, died of “complications related to advanced dementia,” the court heard.
O’Connor inspired generations of female lawyers — including five women who served after she was nominated to the high court. They hailed the path that marked her success in a male-dominated field. Over time, he became known as a moderate conservative and often voted swing on social issues.
She died in 1992 after a career that would see a new conservative-leaning court overturn the abortion decision, lowering the bar between church and state and setting its sights on another area of her interest.
Chief Justice John Roberts described O’Connor as a “patriot” and “a fiercely independent defender of the rule of law and an eloquent advocate for civic education”.
President Joe Biden, meanwhile, hailed her as “an American icon.”
“I don’t agree with all of her views, but I admire her dignity and unwavering devotion to facts, our country, active citizenship and the common good,” Biden said in a statement earlier this month.
In 2018, O’Connor revealed In a letter She was diagnosed with early stages of dementia, probably Alzheimer’s disease.
“Although the final chapter of my life with dementia has been trying, nothing has diminished my gratitude and deep appreciation for the countless blessings in my life,” she wrote.
President Ronald Reagan nominated O’Connor to the bench in 1981 He called her “Truly a man for all seasons, possessed of the distinctive qualities of temperament, integrity, intellectual ability and devotion to the common good, which characterized his 101 brothers before him.”
“Total coffee junkie. Tv ninja. Unapologetic problem solver. Beer expert.”