Obama Remembers LGBTQ Rights Icon Edie Windsor With Heartfelt Tribute

Curtis M. Wong
Obama Remembers LGBTQ Rights Icon Edie Windsor With Heartfelt Tribute

Former President Barack Obama praised LGBTQ rights activist Edith “Edie” Windsor as a “quiet hero” in a lengthy statement following the 88-year-old’s death Tuesday.

Windsor’s 2013 lawsuit against the federal government prompted the Supreme Court to strike down a key part of the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA. The suit, United States v. Windsor, was integral to the 2015 high court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage nationwide. 

“America’s long journey towards equality has been guided by countless small acts of persistence, and fueled by the stubborn willingness of quiet heroes to speak out for what’s right,” Obama wrote of Windsor, a Pennsylvania native who married her second wife, Judith Kasen-Windsor, last year. “Few were as small in stature as Edie Windsor – and few made as big a difference to America.”

The former president touted Windsor’s role in the Supreme Court’s 2015 ruling on marriage equality, which he called “a victory for human decency, equality, freedom, and justice.”

“I thought about all the millions of quiet heroes across the decades whose countless small acts of courage slowly made an entire country realize that love is love – and who, in the process, made us all more free,” he added. “They deserve our gratitude. And so does Edie.”

Obama posted the statement to his official Facebook page, alongside a tender photo snapped by former White House photographer Pete Souza

Obama joined a long list of notables, including former President Bill Clinton, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who sounded off on Windsor’s death. 

Hillary Clinton also offered her condolences on Twitter late Tuesday. Windsor, she wrote, “showed the world that love can be a powerful force for change.” 

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  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.