The following letter was written by Jeanette Hall and published in the online edition of the Ravalli Republic under the title: Assisted Suicide prompts some terminally ill patients to give up on life prematurely. Jeanette's letter follows:
Thank you for publishing the letter by Dr. Ken Stevens describing how he talked his patient out of doing assisted suicide in Oregon. I am that patient and he did save my life.
In 1997, I voted for the initiative that legalized assisted suicide in Oregon.
In 2000, I was diagnosed with cancer and told that I had six months to a year to live. I knew that our law had passed, but I didn’t know exactly how to go about doing it. I did not want to suffer, and I did not want to do radiation. I wanted Stevens to help me, but he didn’t really answer me.
Instead, he encouraged me to not give up and ultimately I decided to fight the cancer. I had both chemotherapy and radiation. I am so happy to be alive!
It is now 12 years later. If Stevens had believed in assisted suicide, I would be dead. I thank him and all my doctors for helping me choose “life with dignity.”
Assisted suicide should not be legal.
Thank you so much.
Jeanette Hall,King City, OregonJeanette. We are glad that you are alive.