Otis McDonald – A Strong Figure For Gun Rights – Dies at Age 80

U.S. Law Shield was saddened to hear that Otis McDonald, 80, the lead plaintiff in the landmark McDonald v. City of Chicago Second Amendment case, died April 4 after a lengthy battle with cancer.

McDonald was 76 at the time the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the right to keep and bear arms was incorporated to the states via the 14th Amendment. The decision effectively ended Chicago’s gun ban.

McDonald was a key figure in the lawsuit brought by the Second Amendment Foundation in June 2008, immediately after the high court had issued its Heller ruling that recognized the Second Amendment protected an individual civil right to keep and bear arms.

Richard A. Pearson, executive director of the Illinois State Rifle Association, said, “Although America has lost Otis McDonald, we have not lost sight of the fact that with our Constitution behind him, one determined man wielded more power than the most entrenched, self serving political machine.

“Otis earned the distinction as being the man who released millions of Illinoisans from the bondage of gun control. The unassuming Mr. McDonald did not want to be a folk hero; he just wanted to do what was right. He shook the foundations of the gun-control movement and his memory will shape public policy for many decades to come.”

McDonald was born in Fort Necessity, La., on September 17, 1933. He is survived by his wife, Laura, and five children. Funeral services for McDonald will be held Friday at the Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church in Harvey, Ill., with interment to follow at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood.

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