Friday, December 31, 2004

Organize a Rally in Your Area


1.Choose a site and time for the rally. Best to choose a government establishment in your area and hold the rally during traffic hour.

2.Notify City Hall or Police what you are planning. Include that it is a peaceful rally. Some cities require a permit, usually at no charge. Remember -- Right to Assemble and Right of Free Speech.

3.Form a committee of family and friends for help.
Contact local groups (Churches, Colleges, etc..) When you contact these groups, please also direct them to This site is filled with every aspect of Terri's plight. It is without error and it also shows the numerous videos clearly showing Terri's interactions.

4. Contact all local news media in your area: T.V. stations, newspapers, radio talk show hosts, etc. Talk radio covers it the best. Have a spokesperson selected. The media will usually ask to speak with someone who can tell them why the rally is happening.

5. Once the planning and date of a Rally is in place, e-mail Cheryl Ford, at . She has established local contacts as well as an enormous address of supporters. You want the best possible coverage.

6.Assign a friend or family member with a camera or personal video.
Assign jobs: phones, emails, etc.

7.Have a note book for a sign up sheet. Have everyone list their name, city, phone number and email address. You can email everyone on the list, please send a newsletter with those that wished to sign on as a Terri supporter. Many people do not know enough about Terri's situation.

8. Make a list of what to write on the signs you will have at the rally.
If possible, have a little one page flyer to pass out to people as they drive or walk by. Many people will stop and ask what is going on. If you have a flyer with bullets highlighting the points in bold type that you can hand to them, it is very helpful.

Remember, it's about getting the word out to everyone and hoping for the best.

Good luck! Keep us posted. Again, thank you!

Sheila Fogarty, Assistant at

cc: Cheryl Ford, R.N, Coordinator at

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Terri's Life in Grave Danger

December 29,2004

This afternoon, attorney for Michael Schiavo, George Felos, issued a press release praising the 2nd DCA's (District Court of Appeal) decision to deny Terri's family the right to a new trial based upon her rights to religious freedom.

Felos wrote, "There is currently no stay preventing removal of the feeding tube in the constitutional litigation between MICHAEL SCHIAVO and Governor Bush, now pending in the United States Supreme Court."

Felos obviously finds great pleasure in adding such a statement to his press release . He boldly hints in his press release that he will quickly file a motion to have Terri's feeding tube removed.

Please be prepared to organize a vigil at Woodside Hospice in Florida


Cheryl Ford R.N.



DUNEDIN, FLORIDA, December 29, 2004--Florida's Second District Court of Appeal, in an order without opinion, has denied the appeal of THERESA SCHIAVO'S parents to reopen her case based upon a recent statement of Pope John Paul II. The parents' claim--that MRS. SCHIAVO would now choose to be tube fed due to the Pope's speech on the subject--was first rejected by the Pinellas County Probate Court in October. MICHAEL SCHIAVO, MRS. SCHIAVO'S husband and Guardian, who chose not to file a brief in the parents' appeal, praised the appellate court's "prompt and definitive denial of the Schindlers' frivolous claim." The probate court's stay order, which has prevented the removal of MRS. SCHIAVO'S artificial life-support until resolution of the "Papal" appeal, will automatically terminate upon the issuance of the appellate court's mandate. The mandate will be issued in fifteen days, or upon denial of any motion for rehearing filed by the parents. There is currently no stay preventing removal of the feeding tube in the constitutional litigation between MICHAEL SCHIAVO and Governor Bush, now pending in the United States Supreme Court.For more information contact Felos & Felos, P. A. - (727) 736-1402.

Will The Lies Never End?

By, The Judicial WatchDogs

December 29, 2004 - The second district court of appeals ordered, without opinion, the denial of Terri Schiavo's parents an opportunity to develop a case that could have saved her life. Previously, Terri's parents filed a petition, asking the court to consider a March, 2004 decree by Pope John Paul II that allowing incapacitated individuals food and fluids through feeding tube assistance was a moral obligation and the removal of such assistance was euthanasia by omission. Terri Schiavo, a life-long, obedient Catholic, is not believed to be in favor of involuntary euthanasia and her parents have tried for years to protect her from a macabre death of dehydration and starvation that is sought by her husband.

Terri Schiavo sustained brain damage following a mysterious medical episode in 1990 that has yet to be explained. Her husband and guardian, Michael Schiavo, sued for rehabilitation benefits and received awards exceeding 1.6 million dollars which were put into trust to provide therapy for Terri. Within a few months, he denied her treatment for a urinary tract infection which could have proved fatal to young Terri. He would later admit, under oath, that he knew the results would cause her death.

Since 1998, Michael Schiavo has mercilessly waged a battle to end his wife's life through the court-approved removal of her assisted sustenance. Such a move is illegal under Florida law without a written directive or clear and convincing evidence of the incapacitated person's medical treatment desires. Neither item exists in Terri's case, yet the courts have favored Michael Schiavo's wishes to end his wife's life.

When the Schindlers (Terri's parents) filed a petition seeking relief based on her religious liberties, the circuit court flatly denied it, stating nothing in the Schindler's petition was new. This was in spite of a recent and clear decree by the head of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope John Paul II that the removal of assisted sustenance was euthanasia and immoral in the eyes of the church.

The Schindlers appealed this and won a stay for their daughter's life in the circuit court. A circuit judge granted an indefinite stay pending all appeals. This means that Terri's food and fluids would not be removed pending any additional legal actions by her parents to protect her.

Interestingly, Michael Schiavo's attorney has stated in recent press interviews that Schiavo would no longer fight the Schindlers or their appeals. Felos told media that "There is no prospect of finality" and that his client would likely give up hopes of finding resolution in the court process.

On December 29, published an interview with Terri's father in which he states: "Everything Felos says or does is to reinforce his efforts to kill Terri Schiavo and further the cause of his euthanasia agenda. Make no mistake, Felos is using the media to send a message to the Appellate Courts in an attempt to gain their empathy in his personal pursuit of ending Terriā€™s life"

It comes as no surprise that Mr. Felos would issue a press release on the day of the second DCA's order in his usual, smarmy and self-righteous pro-death rhetoric, saying such abominable things as: "MICHAEL SCHIAVO, MRS. SCHIAVO'S husband and Guardian, who chose not to file a brief in the parents' appeal, praised the appellate court's "prompt and definitive denial of the Schindlers' frivolous claim" and "The probate court's stay order, which has prevented the removal of MRS. SCHIAVO'S artificial life-support until resolution of the "Papal" appeal, will automatically terminate upon the issuance of the appellate court's mandate. The mandate will be issued in fifteen days, or upon denial of any motion for rehearing filed by the parents."
This is the same attorney who has already written a book titled "Litigation as Spiritual Practice" in which he claims to have the psychic-sensory ability to crash jetliners and speak to comatose patients. He is also accepting $10,000 to $15,000 per gig to speak about the "right to die", using Terri Schiavo's case as a launching pad.
The long suffering Michael Schiavo is living with another woman (for over 9 years) with whom he has 2 children, yet he refuses to dissolve his marriage to Terri Schiavo. Schiavo initially sued medical malpractice on his wife's behalf for close to $20 million. However, he was awarded a paltry $1.6 million. Within 6 months time, he was trying to end his wife's life.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Advanced Directive; A Decision Making Power

November 27, 2004
Cheryl Ford RN

A recent CNN article ("Living Wills Not Always a Clean Solution", 11/26/2004, Associated Press) there are flaws with the use of an advanced directive as opposed to a durable power of attorney(DPOA)/or "trusted loved-one."

The article reports....."People change their minds after they write their living wills but don't update them. Many living wills never make it to the bedside, left in a file cabinet or safety deposit box. And family and doctors often do a poor job of deciphering the patient's wishes even when they have the wills in hand."

"A better end-of-life option, experts say, is to give a trusted loved one the legal authority to make decisions if you become incapacitated. Two large studies found more than 70 percent of people would prefer that doctors rely on family rather than living wills in making decisions about their care."

From my perspective as a health care professional, an advanced directive may not be the 100% cure all for having your wishes carried out correctly, but it would be better than not having one written at all. It is also a better choice than leaving your wishes solely in the hands of a "...trusted loved-one" or Guardian.

The primary flaw in the two large studies cited in the article is our failure to educate the general public about the advantages of the Advance Directive and how to properly prepare one.
For example, if Terri Schindler-Schiavo, a disabled resident of Florida, had prepared an advance directive declaring her wishes, there would be no arguments about what Terri had wanted from either party, be it her parents or her estranged spouse.

Had the Florida courts denied the estranged husband's claims about Terri's wishes as "hearsay" because of the lack of any documentation, the oral arguments would also have been null and void. Michael Schiavo, the estranged husband, was never supported in his claims by anyone except two of his own relatives who were obviously biased. Exactly as his own claims, these two witnesses could never produce any supporting documentation.

The idea of not having an Advance Directive and placing end of life wishes solely into the hands of a family member, or a so-called "trusted loved-one," as cited in the article, is a serious detriment. Placing decisions solely into the hands of any one only opens the doors to any and all influence, be it personal, social, ideological, religious, financial, ethical, etc. The primary drawback is the notion of placing a "decision making power" into someone's hands as opposed to placing a document that clearly and consistently dictates the "decisions" that have already been made.The more effective resolution to this problem as it relates to obliging end of life wishes, (choices resulting out of medical advancement allowing people to remain alive on machinery) is the Advanced Directive.

As a health care professional, I would highly recommend the Advanced Directive as a preferred choice over doing nothing or allowing any individual or entity to take complete control of your destiny. An Advance Directive is an instrument which if handled responsibly by the person to whom it applies, can be fined tuned and updated as necessary. This will ensure consistency between the persons end of life wishes and the document. Legal documents are tools we use in every aspect of our day to day lives. An Advanced Directive, however, can no more be written and left in a safe to collect dust, than any other important document. All such documents require careful monitoring and updates to assure timely accuracy. Such a responsibility is no greater than keeping track of homeowners insurance, stock certificates, car titles, CD's, bank and tax records.

At some point each of us will reach a time when our mental faculties are diminished or taken completely by old age, disease or trauma. We, at that point will not have the ability to go back to change any of the important documents in our life, whether they relate to estate planning, beneficiaries, guardians, or even our own funeral arrangements. It will be assumed by any individual or agency who takes the responsibility to carry our wishes, that we, as responsible individuals, have kept all such important documents updated and current. The only role and responsibility of a trusted loved one/guardian/agency/court ...should be to have access to the documents, make certain the documents reach the appropriate parties, and then monitor the parties to ensure the wishes in the documents have been accurately carried out. The "trusted loved-one" physicians, medical providers or Guardian should never be left in a position, be it in a court of law, acute care setting, skilled nursing facility or hospice of changing or interpreting the documents at anytime. If the document has been written properly, after consulting with the appropriate legal and medical experts of choice, then there should be little or no room left for interpretation or argument.

As it stands with the options available to us today, the Advanced Directive is the most effective tool to ensure each of us our right to self-determination.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Give me My World To Touch, By Cheryl Ford RN

Give me my world to touch......

To see, to breath, to smell, to hear
to live, to love, to savor, to fear...
The freedom for you, is freedom for me
God shares his world so that I can see ....

Give me my world to touch....

To feel, to hold, to love, to mold...
For me to have; for me to unfold.........
T'is granted by God in the garden of LIFE
For equality to those called husband and wife.

Give me my world to touch....

When I was small and my world was tall.......
I dreamt about LIFE, and what it meant for all
I used to dream as I would sit and play......
About the things I would do for others each day...

The candles which glow for you and for me
The moments of freedom are for all to see
I watch the flames flicker as time passes me by......
Mountains and rivers, stars high in the sky.....

Give me my world to touch.........

Freedom moves, freedom climbs, freedom embraces
No biases, no discrimination no predjudices for all faces
Freedom is a right, my God made it mine,
He created it for my LIFE, my world so divine.....

Give me my world to touch.......