Educated at the University of Texas, Weddington grew up as the daughter of a minister in Abilene, West Texas. Following graduation, she and a former classmate, Linda Coffee, filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of a pregnant woman challenging a state law banning abortions.
Susan Hays, Weddington’s former student, and colleague announced on Twitter that the lawyer died on Sunday in her Austin home.
She died in her sleep early Sunday morning at her home in Austin, said Susan Hays, Weddington’s former student, and colleague. Hays told The Associated Press that Weddington’s health had been declining for some time and that the cause of death was not immediately known.
Weddington’s death comes as the Supreme Court
The Supreme Court is considering a case relating to Mississippi’s ban on abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, widely regarded as the most serious challenge to Roe in decades.
Sarah Weddington ran for the House of Representatives while that case was being heard in court. Having been elected to the state legislature in 1972, she served three terms as a legislator before becoming general counsel for the United States Department of Agriculture and later serving as an advisor to President Jimmy Carter on women’s issues.
When Did Weddington First argue in Supreme Court?
Her first argument before the Supreme Court was in 1971, when she was just 26 years old, according to the Dallas Morning News. In 1973, the Supreme Court ruled 7-2 in favor of Roe, overturning abortion laws throughout the country.