Joan Biskupic / CNN
The lesson of Ginsburg's eight decades -- marked by early loss and professional rejection -- is that life's vicissitudes can open unexpected doors and bring new opportunities. Now carrying a commercial tote bag with the words "I dissent," she appreciates her icon status. But she still conveys a modest approach. When asked recently during a public appearance how she wanted to be remembered, she said, "As someone who did the best she could."