Sandra Day O’Connor was the first woman on the U.S. Supreme Court. The legal worls knew her for her centrist stance and adept negotiation skills. Unfortunately, the esteemed Judge has passed away on Friday at 93. The court has confirmed the same.
In an official statement, the court revealed that O’Connor passed away in Phoenix due to complications from advanced dementia. Moreover, she was also suffering from a respiratory illness. Chief Justice John Roberts remembered her as nation’s pioneer female justice.
In his statement, Roberts said “She met that challenge with undaunted determination, indisputable ability, and engaging candor”.
Further, he added, “We at the Supreme Court mourn the loss of a beloved colleague, a fiercely independent defender of the rule of law, and an eloquent advocate for civics education.”
In 2006, O’Connor retired from the nation’s highest court. Later on, she was diagnosed with dementia. She announced in October 2018 that she would step back from public life.
When the pragmatic westerner was replaced by the conservative Justice Samuel Alito, things took a far-right turn. Republican former President George W. Bush, by this appointment took the already-conservative court shifted further to the right.
Justice Elena Kagan joined the court in 2010, following O’Connor’s retirement.
She has stated, “I remember the day Justice O’Connor was nominated to the court as though it just happened.” She further added, “As a young woman looking forward to law school, I thought the event momentous and inspirational. But I couldn’t have known then how momentous and inspirational that new nominee’s tenure on the court would turn out to be.”
O’Connor, raised on an Arizona ranch, faced challenges in male-dominated politics and law. She became the first female justice in 1981, appointed by President Ronald Reagan. Her significance stretched beyond just breaking barriers for women.