Skip Navigation LinksHome > News Media > Press Releases > 07-16-19

For Immediate Release For Further Information Contact:
July 16, 2019 Kathleen L. Arberg (202) 479-3211

Retired Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, John Paul Stevens, died this evening at Holy Cross Hospital in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, of complications following a stroke he suffered on July 15. He passed away peacefully with his daughters by his side. He was 99 years old. Justice Stevens was appointed to the Court by President Ford in 1975, and retired in 2010, after serving more than 34 years on the Court. He is survived by his children, Elizabeth Jane Sesemann (Craig) and Susan Roberta Mullen (Kevin), nine grandchildren: Kathryn, Christine, Edward, Susan, Lauren, John, Madison, Hannah, Haley, and 13 great grandchildren. His first wife Elizabeth Jane, his second wife, Maryan Mulholland, his son, John Joseph, and his daughter, Kathryn, preceded him in death.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. said of Justice Stevens: “On behalf of the Court and retired Justices, I am saddened to report that our colleague Justice John Paul Stevens has passed away. A son of the Midwest heartland and a veteran of World War II, Justice Stevens devoted his long life to public service, including 35 years on the Supreme Court. He brought to our bench an inimitable blend of kindness, humility, wisdom, and independence. His unrelenting commitment to justice has left us a better nation. We extend our deepest condolences to his children Elizabeth and Susan, and to his extended family.”

Justice Stevens was born in Chicago, Illinois on April 20, 1920. He served in the United States Navy from 1942–1945, and was a law clerk to Justice Wiley Rutledge of the Supreme Court of the United States during the 1947 Term. He was admitted to law practice in Illinois in 1949. He was Associate Counsel to the Subcommittee on the Study of Monopoly Power of the Judiciary Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, 1951–1952, and a member of the Attorney General's National Committee to Study Antitrust Law, 1953–1955. He was Second Vice President of the Chicago Bar Association in 1970. From 1970–1975, he served as a Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

Justice Stevens wrote three books: The Making of a Justice: Reflections on My First 94 Years (2019); Six Amendments: How and Why We Should Change The Constitution (2014); and Five Chiefs: A Supreme Court Memoir (2011).

Plans regarding Justice Stevens’ funeral will be released when available.


SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES 1 First Street, NE Washington, DC 20543