Justice Sandra Day O'Connor lies in repose at US Supreme Court building

 December 19, 2023

The late Justice Sandra Day O'Connor lied in repose at the U.S. Supreme Court building this week, ahead of her scheduled funeral on Tuesday.

According to the Washington Examiner, O'Connor was honored with a private ceremony on Monday. She was the first woman to serve on the nation's high court.

The public was provided with designated visiting hours throughout the day.

The late justice passed away at the beginning of the month at age 93. Her death was reportedly a result of "complications associated with dementia and a respiratory illness."

She was considered a "moderate conservative" and was named to the high court by President Ronald Reagan in 1981.

The Examiner noted:

In 1981, O'Connor joined the court, making history as the first woman to hold the position of Supreme Court justice. Her tenure extended until her retirement in 2006, during which her centrist stance often positioned her as a pivotal vote on significant topics such as abortion, affirmative action, and voting rights.

The Examiner noted:

Her casket was placed in the Great Hall on the Lincoln Catafalque, which was loaned to the Supreme Court by Congress for this ceremony. A portrait of O'Connor from 1999 is on display for the ceremony, which was streamed by C-SPAN starting at 9:30 a.m.

Several current justices paid tribute to their predecessor, including Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who described O'Connor as a "remarkable person."

"We are here today to mark the passing of a truly remarkable person," Sotomayor said about the late justice.

"To honor and remember Sandra not only for her work as a judge but for her humanity, leadership, determination, and vision," Sotomayor added.

Unfortunately, drama erupted on Monday while the late justice lied in repose, as one of the Honor Guard soldiers assigned to guard duty by her casket reportedly seized up and ultimately collapsed, the New York Post reported.

The apparently medical emergency happened live during a CNN broadcast. Viewers witnessed the guard wobble for several seconds until another Honor Guard solider came up behind him to help hold him up. But whatever had happened to him medically caused him to collapse to the ground.

The Post reported that the guard's condition is still unknown, and it's unclear what caused the tragic development.