Monday 26 September 2016

'Mum wept when she heard Bernadette Forde was blocked from going to Dignitas' - Marie Fleming's daughter

Published 05/05/2015 | 11:17

COMPASSION: The late Marie Fleming who campaigned for the right to end her life
COMPASSION: The late Marie Fleming who campaigned for the right to end her life

The daughter of 'Right To Die' campaigner and multiple sclerosis sufferer (MS) Marie Fleming has spoken out after the landmark ruling on an assisted suicide case last week.

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Corinna Moore told Newstalk that the case against Gail O'Rorke "raised a lot of emotions that had been buried for the last year" following the death of her mother who died in December 2013.

Gail O'Rorke arrives at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court, Dublin, where she went on trial in connection with the assisted suicide of MS sufferer Bernadette Forde
Gail O'Rorke arrives at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court, Dublin, where she went on trial in connection with the assisted suicide of MS sufferer Bernadette Forde

"It was a bit of a shock hearing your Mum's name coming up on the media, seeing pictures of her again after the last year which has been pretty quiet for us really since Mum's death and the book launch," she said.

Gail O'Rorke was before the courts last week, facing charges of assisting the suicide of her friend Bernadette Forde in Dublin back in 2011.

Ms Forde had been suffering from MS, the very same debilitating illness which afflicted Marie Fleming who brought a case to the high court in 2012 to be afforded the right to end her life on her terms.

Ms Moore said that "a huge part" of herself and her family are proud of what her mother Marie had achieved, "in that her name is synonymous with the right to die, and everything she achieved in the courts".

Bernadette Forde
Bernadette Forde

"But obviously she's your Mum at the end of the day - it raises emotions that it wouldn't raise for other people. It's a mixed bag. there's pride and there's sadness that she's not around to hear and to experience the legacy that she's left.

She said that she was with her mother when they heard that "a lady suffering from MS had been stopped going to Dignitas [euthanasia clinic in Switzerland] at the travel agent when the tickets where being collected".

"My mum was so upset, she wept actually. She understood what it would have taken for Bernadette to raise the issue with her family, got support from her family and then encouraged a friend to do that on her behalf.

"We as a family had already been through that with Mum. She had obviously been processing it for a long long time. And then to raise it with us knowing it wold be so incredibly painful. Knowing also the landscape she was raising it into."

Ms Moore said that her mother "never waivered, not for one single moment".

"My mum was always a fighter. She often felt frustrated by the world she was growing up in. She fought against that time and time again. She fought every single day for 25 years.

"She felt she should be allowed determined how the end of her life should be."

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