Remember Terry Schiavo, the woman who was deprived of nourishment and even water until she died back in 2005 by order of the court? The husband’s attorney claimed that she died peacefully and without any evidence of suffering or pain? Well, the priest who was at her bedside in the last hours of her life wrote a detailed account of what really happened that contradicts the story given to the media by Terry’s husband legal representative. Here is a short quote taken from said account authored by Frank Pavone, the National Director of Priests for Life.
“There was a little night table in the room. I could put my hand on the table and on Terri’s head all within arm’s reach. And on that table was a vase of flowers filled with water. And I looked at the flowers. They were beautiful. There were roses and other types of flowers and there was another vase at the foot of the bed. I saw two beautiful bouquets of flowers filled with water — fully nourished, living, beautiful. And I said to myself, this is absurd, totally absurd. These flowers are being treated better than this woman. She has not had a drop of water for almost two weeks. Why are those flowers there? What type of hypocrisy is this? The flowers were watered. Terri wasn’t. And had I dipped my hand in that water and put it on her tongue, the officer would have led me out, probably under arrest. Something is wrong here.”
“Terri’s case is not about the withdrawal of life-saving medical treatment, but rather about the killing of a healthy person whose life some regarded as worthless. Terri was not dying, was not on life support, and did not have any terminal illness. Because some thought she would not want to live with her disability, they insisted on introducing the cause of death, namely, dehydration.”
I suggest that you take the time to read Pavone’s full account of this terrible tragedy. You’ll be glad you did! Dying of thirst is never a painless or peaceful experience. It would have been more merciful if a bullet had ended her life instead of two weeks of
deprivation of the most important ingredient needed for life: water We don’t treat animals that way!
This reminds me of the day my dad passed away. He was in the hospital and his physician had informed us that his situation was hopeless and that there was nothing else medicine could do for him. He had been in and out of the hospital for years, and the doctor told us that he was already in a comatose state. He asked us whether we wanted extreme measures to be used to keep him alive in case his heart were to fail.
We responded that there was no use resorting to an exercise in futility. He had suffered a great deal for several years and we felt that bringing him back to life under such circumstances in order to prolong his pain and suffering made no sense. Some days later I noticed that my dad lips were bleeding, and I asked his nurse if she could apply some Vaseline to relieve his discomfort. The next day he died.
I was totally in the dark about hospital procedures under this kind of circumstances, but as time went on, I began to connect the dots and I asked myself: “Could it be that his lips were bleeding because he might have been deprived of nourishment and water.” This thought that he might have been subjected to a similar treatment to that experienced by Terry Schiavo has haunted me since then.