WASHINGTON (AP) — With crowds of admirers swelling outside, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was remembered Wednesday at the court by grieving family, colleagues and friends as a prophet for justice who persevered against long odds to become an American icon.
When the hearse carrying the casket of Justice Ginsburg arrived at the Supreme Court, her law clerks over her almost three decade career, were already waiting.
Supreme Court police officers ascended the marble steps and entered the Great Hall. Inside, Chief Justice John Roberts used humor and reverence to honor his late colleague.
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“Her voice in court and in our conference room was soft, but when she spoke people listened,” Chief Justice Roberts said. “Among the words that best describe Ruth: tough, brave, a fighter, a winner,
but also thoughtful, careful, compassionate, honest.”
Outside the court, the lines meandered along the side of the building.
“I could not let this moment go by without coming to give thanks,” Anna Monteiro, of Connecticut, said.
“She was the one that really introduced me to RBG a few years ago, and I think it’s really inspiring for us to see as women, that we can do more even if other people are telling us not to,” Bridget Condon, of Connecticut, said.
A group of young ladies came from Annapolis. Josie Shineman is in the 8th grade.
“We are showing our respect to her because everything she worked for basically her whole life is very important, especially for women,” Shineman said.
Chief Justice Roberts said the court was Justice Ginsburg’s family, and the Supreme Court of the United States was also her home.
“She was iconic. My sons understand the value of her contributions on the Supreme Court and the value of her career over the last 50 years,” Lena Culp, of Missouri, said.
On Friday, Justice Ginsburg will lie in state at the Capitol, the first woman to do so and only the second Supreme Court justice after William Howard Taft.
Taft had also been president. Rosa Parks, a private citizen not a government official, is the only woman who has lain in honor at the Capitol.
Ginsburg will be buried beside her husband, Martin, in a private ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery next week.
Martin Ginsburg died in 2010. She is survived by her son and daughter, four grandchildren, two step-grandchildren and a great-grandchild.
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