WATCH ABOVE: Brittany Maynard’s mother describes being by her side during her final moments
TORONTO – The story of Brittany Maynard — a 29-year-old woman who moved to Oregon to qualify for the state’s Death with Dignity Act after a terminal brain cancer diagnosis — reignited the debate on physician-assisted dying. Now, almost three months later, her mother and three lawmakers are promoting right-to-die legislation in her home state of California.
Maynard’s family has been speaking publicly for the first time since her November death.
READ MORE: How doctor-assisted dying works in Oregon
“I was either going to be there and be strong or I was not going to be there and regret it the rest of my life,” said Maynard’s mother, Deborah Ziegler, in tears.
“We were all terrified…My daughter would wake up in the hospital just gasping for breath.”
Maynard had argued in online videos that patients facing imminent death should be able to die on their own terms; Maynard’s mother and husband are at the state Capitol on Wednesday to support such a bill on Wednesday. The California proposal would require terminally ill patients to take a prescription of the fatal medication themselves. Previous efforts have failed after facing opposition from religious and medical groups.
Watch the video above to see how Ziegler said the Oregon Death with Dignity Act impacted Maynard’s situation, and to hear what senators and opponents have to say about end of life choices.
With files from The Associated Press
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