Sandra Day O’Connor, the Groundbreaking First Female Justice of the Supreme Court, Passes Away at 93

Phoenix, Arizona – December 2, 2023

Sandra Day O'Connor

“Sandra Day O’Connor,” the pioneering former Supreme Court Justice and the “first woman” to sit on the USA Supreme Court, passed away at the age of 93 on Friday. The Supreme Court confirmed that O’Connor died due to complications arising from advanced dementia, likely Alzheimer’s, and a respiratory illness.

Nominated by President Ronald Reagan in 1981, “O’Connor” made history as the first female justice on the high court. Her tenure spanned nearly a quarter-century until her retirement in 2006, leaving an indelible mark on the legal landscape.

Chief Justice John Roberts expressed condolences in a statement, acknowledging “O’Connor’s” historic role as the nation’s first female justice. He praised her undaunted determination, indisputable ability, and engaging candor in meeting the challenges of her groundbreaking position.

Beyond her historic appointment, “O’Connor’s” influence was notable in her co-authorship of the majority opinion in the 1992 landmark case “Planned Parenthood v. Casey,” upholding a woman’s right to choose. However, in 2022, her successor, Justice Samuel Alito, authored the majority opinion overturning the federal right to abortion protected for decades by “Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.”

Alongside the late Justice “Ruth Bader Ginsburg,” O’Connor played a crucial role in paving the path for upcoming female justices. Since Ginsburg’s passing in 2020, four more women have been appointed to the Supreme Court: Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, Ketanji Brown Jackson, and Amy Coney Barrett.

“O’Connor’s” journey to the Supreme Court began with her appointment as a judge on the “Arizona Court of Appeals.” Before her esteemed judicial career, she served as assistant attorney general of Arizona, a member of the “Arizona state Senate (holding the position of majority leader), and as a judge of the Maricopa County Superior Court.”

Having retired in 2006, “O’Connor” withdrew from public life in 2018 due to short-term memory issues. Her husband, John, passed away in 2009, a period during which she retired to care for him during his battle with Alzheimer’s.

Survived by three sons, six grandchildren, and her brother, “Sandra Day O’Connor’s” funeral arrangements are yet to be released by the Supreme Court’s press office. The nation mourns the loss of this legal trailblazer and celebrates “O’Connor’s” enduring legacy as a true public servant and patriot.

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