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Dominic Marks, Fargo, Published March 22 2014

Letter: Euthanasia can be a humane choice

In response to Rachelle Sauvageau’s commentary “Euthanasia can never be called ‘humane.”:

That letter was very hurtful, insulting and false. Because I was raised Catholic, I feel compelled to respond to the predictable boilerplate.

My father died of cancer when I was in adolescence. His type of cancer was lyomyosarcoma – a rare cancer of the smooth muscles of the intestine. It was a tumor that grew in his intestines and ended up cutting off his GI tract, was entangled in arteries, and grew to the size where it caused extreme pain as it pushed on his spinal cord in his last months before he eventually died of starvation. He had a fully functioning brain and set of emotions as his body starved and wilted to death.

We were not stupid, but maybe hopeful and delusional. We knew exactly how terminal his disease was. Although, we did try everything within our power to cure that cancer, which included stints at Mayo, Madison and even Dulles Air Force Base for some of the experimental human radiation treatments. He had his sperm frozen early in the process because of the chemical and radiological mingling that would happen in hopes of a cure. He died in pain and suffering, and after begging us to cease to exist. He ate only ice chips for his last two months. It would have been much better, easier and helpful for him and my family if he had had the opportunity to die with dignity, and in a state where he was able to say proper farewells, rather than an animal forced to starve.

Because this is a letter to the editor, I am unable to show the pictures here, but I will upon personal request. Unfortunately, I also can’t share the smell of those tumors. To say euthanasia is always inhumane is insulting, cruel and false.