Washington (AP)- Chief Justice William Rehnquist, who served
more than 30 years on the Supreme Court, has died. he was 80.
A statement from a court spokeswoman says he was surrounded by
his three children when he died in Arlington, Virginia, Saturday
evening after battling thyroid cancer. Rehnquist was first appointed to the high court in 1971, taking his seat the following January. Appointed Chief Justice in 1986, he
presided over the longest stretch of Supreme Court continuity in
modern history. Despite the increasing physical problems of age, Rehnquist remained invigorated by the job. In October 2004, a terse announcement of Rehnquist's battle with
thyroid cancer caught even the closest supreme court observers off guard. In the months that followed, Rehnquist worked mainly from home. He made his first public appearance since the diagnosis when he delivered the oath of office at President Bush's second inauguration. Rehnquist was a conservative who campaigned for presidential candidates Barry Goldwater and Richard Nixon. Only one Chief Justice, Roger Taney was older, presiding at age 87. Only John Marshall and William O. Douglass served on the court longer.
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