Anthony Lewis died at the age of 85 after gaining the admiration of media colleagues as a two-time Pulitzer winner who wrote for the New York Times, specializing in Supreme Court reporting.
Lewis died Monday morning from heart and renal-related problems, his wife, Margaret Marshall, a former chief justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, confirmed, according to the Boston Globe. Marshall, who became the chief justice in 1999, wrote the court's decision to legalize same-sex marriage in 2003. Massachusetts is the first state to legalize gay marriage in the U.S.
The long-time New York Times columnist won his first Pulitzer in 1955 at the age of 28 for a national reporting story published in the Washington Daily News, and then again in 1963 for another national reporting article published in the New York Times.
"His fearlessness, the clarity of his writing and his commitment to human rights and civil liberties are legendary," said Gail Collins, the editorial page editor of the Times, to The Associated Press. "And he's also one of the kindest people I have ever known."
Lewis' reporting area of interests include constitutional law, free speech, and human rights.
President Clinton awarded Lewis the Presidential Citizens Award in 2001 for his defense of freedom of speech, individual rights, and rule of law.
His books included, the bestseller Gideon's Trumpet (1964), Freedom for the Thought That We Hate: A Biography of the First Amendment (2008), and Make No Law: The Sullivan Case and the First Amendment (1991).
Lewis was born March 27, 1927, in New York City, and graduated from Harvard College in 1948. He studied law at Harvard for a year, which helped him in his Supreme Court coverage for the Times. Lewis was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease later in life.