Saturday, March 19, 2005

Terry's Cry For Help

The Empire Journal is reporting a thorough account of Terry's last visit with her attorney.

On Friday, March 18, less than an hour after Sixth Circuit Court Judge George W. Greer defied subpoenas issued by a Congressional committee for Terri Schindler-Schiavo to appear as a federal witness in a Congressional investigation, attorneys for Terri’s parents, Mary and Bob Schindler, visited Terri to tell her that the death order was going to be executed and that she would die.

When asked by her parents and their attorneys if she wanted to live, Terri Schiavo made two conscious attempts to say “Yeah” and began to cry when told that her husband, Michael Schiavo, would be removing her feeding tube on orders of Judge Greer, which would result in her death by starvation.

The Empire Journal has obtained an exclusive, first hand last visit narrative by Barbara Weller who with David Gibbs III of the Gibbs Law Firm of Seminole, Fl., is representing the Schindler family in their efforts to save Terri’s life.

The most dramatic event of this visit happened at one point when I was sitting on Terri’s bed next to Suzanne. Terri was sitting in her lounge chair and her aunt was standing at the foot of the chair. I stood up and learned over Terri. I took her arms in both of my hands. I said to her, “Terri if you could only say ‘I want to live’ this whole thing could be over today.” I begged her to try very hard to say, “I want to live.” To my enormous shock and surprise, Terri’s eyes opened wide, she looked me square in the face, and with a look of great concentration, she said, “Ahhhhhhh.” Then, seeming to summon up all the strength she had, she virtually screamed, “Waaaaaaaa.” She yelled so loudly that Michael Vitadamo, Suzanne’s husband, and the female police officer who were then standing together outside Terri’s door, clearly heard her. At that point, Terri had a look of anguish on her face that I had never seen before and she seemed to be struggling hard, but was unable to complete the sentence. She became very frustrated and began to cry. I was horrified that I was obviously causing Terri so much anguish. Suzanne and I began to stroke Terri’s face and hair to comfort her. I told Terri I was very sorry. It had not been my intention to upset her so much. Suzanne and I assured Terri that her efforts were much appreciated and that she did not need to try to say anything more. I promised Terri I would tell the world that she had tried to say, ”I want to live.”

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3 Comments:

Blogger Breanne said...

You should know that, if in fact Terri is brain dead (as the past 17 judges have ruled), then this is all lies. There would be no way that Terri could possibly mutter any words. If anything, she was probably just groaning.
In my opinion, they should have let Terri die, as she wished, whenever the accident occurred. There is nothing wrong with dying with some dignity.

2:54 PM  
Blogger Marie said...

As an RN who is certified in critical care and have worked in the area for 22 years, I can say that there is a big difference from withdrawing support from someone who is actively dying as opposed to withdrawing food and water from someone in a disabled state. If a person is brain dead, you would certainly not see any purposeful movement or verbalization. You would not even be able to illicit a gag response or cough with the flattened brain waves of a brain dead person. As the mother of a child who is brain damaged and has a feeding tube, I see this as a chilling, disturbing trend where we value life based on functionality. I am all for allowing people who are actively dying to die with dignity, but we cross a line when we withhold food and water because of a disability. We are all potentially a second away from a disability.

9:39 PM  
Blogger VeeJay said...

Marie, I appreciate your very qualified and articulate and sobering response. I agree wholeheartedly with what you've said here. You are so right...it dawns on me nearly every time I fire up my truck engine to drive to work that I could be one patch of black ice away from a feeding tube. May God grant you strength and joy as you raise your child and may you rest in the knowledge and hope that your child's life is infinitely valuable to our Creator.

11:35 AM  

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