Ex-Supreme Court Justice Powell Dies
Associated Press, August 25, 1998
WASHINGTON, DCRetired Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell, who
for 15 years played a pivotal role in shaping American law as a "majority maker"
on the high court, died today at age 90.
Powell died of pneumonia in his sleep at 4:30 a.m. EDT at his home in Richmond, Va.,
according to a statement released by the court.
Powell cast the controlling votes when the court first upheld the concept of
affirmative action and ruled that consenting adults have no constitutional right to engage
in homosexual conduct.
Powells health had waned in recent months. In December, he closed the office he
had kept at the Supreme Court building since his 1987 retirement. Poor health prevented
his traveling to the nations capital from his home in Richmond, Va.
Powells last hospitalization for any significant duration had been in 1991, after
he suffered a fainting spell and irregular heartbeat while attending a meeting in
Baltimore. He also had hip-replacement surgery in 1991.
Powell cited concern for his health when he retired, but in a 1990 interview he told
The Associated Press, "My health has remained better than I anticipated."
In that interview, Powell said, "Lets face it, Ive outlived my
generation. Most of the friends I have held dear through my life are dead now."
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