Friday, June 3, 2011

R.I.P. Dr. Jack Kevorkian

6/3/11. Dr. Death dies.

His blunt, passionate, audacious, often reckless support for the right to die made him both a hero and villain.

"...Over 130 people died painlessly with the help of these machines and the doctor who invented them. The first was Janet Adkins, a former college instructor on disability, who resolved to kill herself the day she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, and did so, with Dr Kevorkian in attendance, in his rusty van in a Michigan campsite. Those who followed her seemed unremarkable: a bus driver, a doctor, a supervisor at a pillow factory and so on, all terminally ill, or so they believed. Studies of those who sought out Dr Kevorkian, however, suggest that though many had a worsening illness, cancer perhaps or a neurological disease, it was not usually terminal. Autopsies showed five people had no disease at all. Those who came to him were more likely to be women than men, often unmarried and typically ill-at-ease when talking to doctors. Little over a third were in pain. Some presumably suffered from no more than hypochondria or depression..."
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