A Death at Dignitas
John Close: 'More like a thing than a human being'
John Close was fit, healthy and very independent until
he developed motor neurone disease. As the illness progressed
he decided to travel to Dignitas in 2003 to end his life
but faced a journey of five hundred miles in great pain
Three Suicides, Three Reasons to
Liz Smith's parents: 'We just sat there, waiting for this
For many years Barbara Smith said she would kill herself
if she developed dementia and life became untenable. She
committed suicide in 1995. Her widower, Don, was diagnosed
with cancer in 2002 and found it difficult to cope without
complete control over his life and future. He also decided
to end his life but his carefully laid plans didn't go
Neil Love: 'Time to go while
it's my choice'
In 1988 Neil Love's optician spotted cause for concern
during a routine examination and hospital scans revealed
an epidermoid cyst, deep inside his skull and inoperable.
Neil and his wife, Lizzie, moved to a friendly village
in Derbyshire's Peak District and enjoyed life while his
condition slowly deteriorated. Eventually, in October
2003, Neil decided to end his life without telling Lizzie
to protect her from prosecution.
Aiding and Abetting Suicide
Nigel Goodman: 'I am suffering and I want to die'
Heather Pratten discovered to her horror that her husband
had Huntington's disease. Two of her sons, Nigel and Phillip,
also developed the disease. Although Nigel protested that
he was fine, eventually he was unable to cope and decided
he no longer wanted to live. Heather sat with him as he
consumed drugs given to him by friends but all did not
go to plan and Heather later confessed to helping him
end his life.
Voluntarily Stopping Eating and
Efstratia Tuson: 'Talk to the Captain; they can just drop
Born in Cairo in 1924, Efstratia Tuson married a British
soldier and moved to England. In 2003, during an operation
to remove an ovarian cyst, she was found to have a very
rare type of cancer. She was constantly in pain and discomfort
for several years and, after failing to get an early date
from Dignitas, decided to end her life in the only way
available to her.
Good Care But a Bad Death
Colin Marriage: 'Another week? I can't do another week!'
Colin was only thirty-nine when he became unwell in 2011.
After numerous tests he was diagnosed with a very aggressive
type of cancer, given between a month and a year to live,
and started on chemotherapy. Colin and his fiancée
married in hospital. As his condition detriorated rapidly
he pleaded with the doctors to end his life.
A Recent Death at Dignitas
Ron Clinch: 'Want to share this one, Brian?'
Strong-minded and independent, Ron Clinch wanted a peaceful
death after suffering with ideopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
With the full support of his family and escorted by his
brother he set off on the difficult overland journey to
Dignitas in 2012. Ron's high oxygen dependence made the
journey particularly difficult.