Norma McCorvey, better known as “Jane Roe” of the infamous Roe v. Wade Supreme Court Case that made abortion legal in all 50 states, has died at 69 years old.
McCorvey died of heart failure on Saturday, February 18, at an assisted living facility in Katy, Texas. Her death was confirmed by her daughter, Melissa.
McCorvey began her journey as “Jane Roe” when she was 22 years old and pregnant with her third child.
At the time, McCorvey was unmarried and battling addiction and poverty in Texas, according to The Washington Post. She already had two children — one of which she gave up for adoption — and was seeking an abortion for her third.
At the time, abortions were only legal in Texas if the mother’s life was in danger, so McCorvey could not find a doctor to perform one for her.
Attorneys Sarah Weddington and Linda Coffee picked up her case and filed a lawsuit in 1970, which was taken to the Supreme Court and passed on January 22, 1973. The rest is history.
By the time McCorvey’s case was taken to court, she had already brought her unwanted pregnancy to full term and gave the child up for adoption.
However, her efforts paid off when the Supreme Court made abortion completely legal during a woman’s first trimester of pregnancy.
The court declared its 7-2 decision, and Roe v. Wade altered the lives of millions of women who fought to have ultimate control over their reproductive rights.
McCorvey’s journey throughout the battle for reproductive rights changed when she became a born-again Christian in 1995.
After declaring herself pro-life, she spoke at multiple pro-life rallies to have Roe v. Wade overturned. But the battle for a woman’s right to choose is still as prevalent as ever.
It has been exceptionally rambunctious in recent months, as our current president’s administration plans to completely defund Planned Parenthood and our current vice president has been quoted saying, “I long for the day that Roe v. Wade is sent to the ash heap of history.”
It’s thanks to Norma McCorvey that we were given the right to choose in the first place, and women will continue the fight to ensure the right to make decisions about their own bodies isn’t taken away.
Rest in peace, “Jane Roe.” Thank you for your efforts to make a woman’s choice matter.