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Thank you for the background information about Hugh Finn. I had not heard of this case. It's disgusting to use a family's most difficult moment for political gain.


unfortunately, the postion Bishop Sullivan took is, as Ron Ziegler would have said, no longer operable for the Catholic Church, which now says that feeding tubes should not be removed.

I thank you for hour courage then, and for reminding us today of these details.

Elaine Owens

Thank you for giving us another example to explain that there are certain horrible, difficult decisions that families have to make where the state using its power to intervene is a complete misapplication of its authority - unfair, immoral, and unconstitutional.
I will never forget when my husband lay dying in our local hospital - where we only wanted relief from pain because there was no way to change the fact that his life was ending very soon. Two days before he died, I received a phone call from my husband saying that his doctor - who felt guilty because he had not diagnosed his condition early enough - had order blood transfusions. I rushed back to the hospital and helped my husband stop the transfusions.
I asked the doctor if the transfusions would make any difference in the outcome, and he said that it would just postpone death a few days. Since my husband was already refusing food and since his veins had shut down - making fluid replenishment impossible - we were able to keep his wishes paramount - to be allowed to die with dignity and grace and to maintain some control over the short time he had to live.
Was it hard to go along with his wishes? Of course it was. But, the pain I was going through would have been multiplied over and over if the state or some agent of the state had tried to intervene in the most personal tragedy I have ever faced.
There are things worse than death, and for a person of faith there is something beyond this world.
The stories of Terri Shiavo and of Hugh Finn are played out in some form in hundreds of families each day. Simple respect should keep politicians from making these sad events into political ploys.

Chip Woodrum

Ms. Owens:
Thank you for your comment and for sharing your very difficult personal situation. Your experience demostrates the very difficult nature of these situations and why the decisions should be made in the privacy of the family wherever possible and without the overreaching intrusion of unwarranted government or political interference.
Chip Woodrum

Suzanne Russo

25 years ago, my mother lay in the hospital dying of cancer, with around the clock visits from her 6 childfen and many other family members. DNR's were unheard of at this time, but we were so very close to the Karen Ann Quinlan case, being in NY, and Ms. Quinlan in NJ. After Ms. Quinlan's family's very public fight to let her go, my father made a decision that I cannot imagine was easy... when my mother passed, rather than having the hospital staff bring her back over and over, my father sat with his wife's dead body for over 10 minutes, to be sure she was beyond the point of resucitation. I give him an unbelievable amount of credit for making what is the most difficult decision of a lifetime; but a necessary one. I can't say that I know what my father and mother spoke about in the last month of her life, and what her decision was, but in my adulthood, I understand and agree with my father's actions, no matter how much I miss my mother.

God Bless the Shindler's, the Schiavo's, and God Bless Terri, may she go peacefully, and may her family one day heal the wounds these 15 years have created.

Thank you for sharing Mr. & Mrs. Finn's story, to help people who don't know that Mrs. Schiavo's plight is not a new one.

All the best.

Suzanne R.

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