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Woman with Terminal Brain Cancer Plans to Take Life, Says It Is Not Suicide

Carrie Dedrick | Thursday, October 9, 2014

Woman with Terminal Brain Cancer Plans to Take Life, Says It Is Not Suicide

A 29-year-old woman has decided that she will end her life on Nov. 1. Brittany Maynard has terminal brain cancer; she has decided that she will take advantage of Oregon’s Death with Dignity Act to end her life through physician-assisted suicide if she does not die naturally in the month of October. 

Maynard, who celebrated her first wedding anniversary to husband Dan Diaz in September, says that her choice to end her life is not suicide. 

“There is not a cell in my body that is suicidal or that wants to die. I want to live. I wish there was a cure for my disease but there’s not,” Maynard said. 

“My glioblastoma is going to kill me, and that’s out of my control. I’ve discussed with many experts how I would die from it, and it’s a terrible, terrible way to die. Being able to choose to go with dignity is less terrifying.”

Maynard moved from California to Oregon to be able to end her life through the Death with Dignity Act. She has joined with organization Compassion & Choices, a group the promotes physician-assisted suicide for terminally ill patients. 

Maynard said her family supports her decision.

"When we all sat down and looked at the facts, there isn't a single person that loves me that wishes me more pain and more suffering,” she said. 

Maynard plans to take a lethal dose of prescription medication and die peacefully in her bedroom surrounded by family. 

Publication date: October 9, 2014