Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s husband wrote her a touching final letter

We have all heard this story dozens of times. Boy meets girl. Boy and girl fall in love. Boy marries girl. Boy and girl live happily ever after. But in Marty Ginsburg’s case, he just so happened to fall in love with the formidable future Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Marty and Ruth fell in love while studying at Cornell University in 1950, when Ruth was only a freshman and he was a sophomore, per Biography. In 1954, the pair tied the knot and, well, the rest is pretty much history — literally. Marty and Ruth went on to celebrate an incredible 56 anniversaries together. 

And, while their marriage weathered its fair share of storms, like Marty’s rare cancer diagnosis while he was still enrolled in law school, the couple remained hopelessly devoted to one another, fighting life’s hardest battles together — even when his cancer returned and Marty succumbed to the illness many years later. Shortly after Ruth’s passing, however, a letter that her then-ailing husband wrote to her resurfaced (via The Washington Post) and the contents were heart-wrenching. Keep reading after the jump to learn about what Marty asked Ruth to help him do during his last days on Earth.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg's husband protected her until the end

When Marty Ginsburg’s cancer returned in 2010, the doctors were left with few options, per The Washington Post. In short, the prognosis was not good and, eventually, Marty was sent home from Johns Hopkins Medical Center so he could be near his family during his final days. But from the looks of the letter Marty wrote to his wife, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Marty was apprehensive about being a burden to his loved ones — specifically Ruth. 

In the letter, Marty gushed about Ruth being the love of his life. “My dearest Ruth — You are the only person I have loved in my life… What a treat it has been to watch you progress to the very top of the legal world.” But he also seemed to be seeking his wife’s permission to let go of life altogether. “I shall think hard on my remaining health and life, and whether on balance the time has come for me to tough it out or to take leave of life because the loss of quality now simply overwhelms. I hope you will support where I come out, but I understand you may not. I will not love you a jot less.” He passed away one week later.

The author of Ruth’s biography, Ruth Bader Ginsburg: A Life, described the letter as one “final protective act.” Author Jane Sherron De Hart wrote, “He had taken from his wife the burden of the decision.” While it must have been difficult for these two to part, we cannot help but long for a love as selfless as theirs.

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