Saturday, March 05, 2005

From Tom Broderson, Pat Anderson's Husband.

My name is Tom Brodersen. I am attorney Pat Anderson's office manager,
formerly her fiance, and more recently, her husband. I have personal
knowledge about Terri Schiavo's actual neurological condition and
responsiveness which we could not use before because of Pat's role as
attorney for the Schindler family. That is now changed, and I cannot
sit quietly by and passively observe a miscarriage of justice.

During the period of September to November of 2002 (from just before to
shortly after the medical evidentiary hearing featuring five doctors as
witnesses), I spent time with Terri Schiavo, as a person (briefly) on
her visitors list.

During that time I gently spoke to her, built rapport and trust, sang
to her, played music for her, and encouraged her to vocalize. Over the
twenty days or so that I visited with Terri, I observed that, while
Terri is distrustful of strangers, she gradually warmed up to me (and
not so gradually after Bob, Mary and I sang "Those Were the Days" to
her as a trio!). Terri responds to a variety of stimulii, including
responding to both her mother's and my voices, both in person and over
the phone, by fixing her attention and frequently by laughing. When I
sang to her, she often VOCALIZED, in her best effort to sing along with
me. She recognizes and takes great pleasure in certain singers and
songs which ARE her favorites (most especially John Denver
singing "Country Roads"). She learned to love several songs I sang to
her with which she didn't seem to be familiar with, but others she
never learned to appreciate (just not her cup of tea, obviously). She
responded to gentle requests if given time and patience, such as
lifting her right leg (three times out of four requests, the other time
she lifted her left leg instead). While she does not have consistent
control over her eyes to blink or look this way or that, she has
excellent control over her breathing, diaphram and voice, and will
vocalize
in various patterns if asked. While trying to work out a yes/no system
with sounds, Terri initially answered the question "Terri, are you ten
feet tall" by moaning twice, which is the response for "No," then she
spontaneously whispered the word "No" in response to the question
"Terry,
are you purple?". At that point I abandoned the sounding system and
started
trying to teach her to say "Yeah" as best as she could. Bob Schindler
has several recordings of her sort of saying the word "Yeah" shortly
after that.

Unfortunately, I was then taken off Terri's visitors list, but on
successive occasions (as recently as last October, approximately two
years since I last saw her in person), when her father placed
a phone to Terri's ear so I could talk to her, she laughed as soon
as she heard my voice, andtried to sing along with me when I sang
to her over the phone.

Terri is not just "in there," she is very responsive, she loves music,
and she is my friend. Please don't kill her.

Tom Brodersen