Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady dies unexpectedly

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The family of Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady says he has died of a heart attack at age 66.

Cady’s family says in a statement posted on the court’s website that he died unexpectedly on Friday. In the statement, the Iowa Judicial Branch statement says Cady’s “passing is a great loss to the court and the state he so loyally served.” A spokesman says Cady was in Des Moines when he died.

Cady, of Ft. Dodge, was appointed to the Iowa Supreme Court in 1998 and named chief justice in 2011.

He was a key vote in decisions that rankled social conservatives. Cady wrote the 2009 unanimous opinion that made Iowa the third state to permit same-sex marriages and he wrote last year’s decision upholding a woman’s right to an abortion under the Iowa Constitution.

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