Saturday, August 06, 2005

Michael Schiavo Honored for Terri's Death!

Cheryl Ford RN Comments: He "stuck by her," Kenny states?
Schiavo has been carry on in an adulterous relationship for over ten years and has fathered two illegitimate children. Immediately after Terri's unexplained tragedy, he had dated several other women. Have the vows and definition of commitment and "sticking by" someone since changed in the last two decades? I don't think so! It is clear that Michelle Kenny is a part of the ignorant clan who paid no attention to the true FACTS behind Terri's situation.

It should not come as a surprise to me that it would be the Florida Guardian Association and the ignorance of its keynote speaker, Kenneth Goodman, who would acknowledge a person like Michael Schiavo. Goodman and I were guest speakers on a Ft. Lauderdale radio talk show a few months back. I decided to use the opportunity to publicly question him about just how much he knew about the specifics of Terri's case. When he could not appropriately respond to my questions on LIVE talk radio, stating he did not have the papers in front of him, it became clear to me that I was wasting my time speaking to a person who did not research the facts regarding Terri Schindler's case. People like Goodman migrate to Florida because of the obvious ease they can make a living advocating for the death of the innocent and disabled. The only "PRIMITIVE" in my opinion, is the thinking of the University of Miami BIOETHICIST, Kenneth Goodman!

It still remains despicable that an organization such as The Florida Guardianship Association would have the audacity to publicly support the cruel murder of a human being, that they would go so far to organize an award for a person like Michael Schiavo!

I surely hope that all the people who wrote and supported Terri throughout her inhumane death will take the time to write and show just how many "THOUSANDS" there are who did not agree with what Michael did to Terri!
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KRT Wire | 08/05/2005 | Guardians laud Michael Schiavo for fulfilling wife's wishes

Posted on Fri, Aug. 05, 2005

Guardians laud Michael Schiavo for fulfilling wife's wishes


The Orlando Sentinel

DORAL, Fla. - (KRT) - He has been rebuked by the Vatican, castigated by Congress and slandered on the Internet, but Michael Schiavo was welcomed as a hero Friday by a state organization whose members make end-of-life decisions for people unable to make them for themselves.

The Florida State Guardianship Association bestowed its Guardian of the Year Award on Schiavo for carrying out his wife's wishes not to be kept alive artificially despite a drumbeat of withering criticism.

In a rare public appearance, Schiavo, 42, modestly accepted the award at the association's 18th annual conference at the Doral Golf Resort & Spa west of Miami.

"As you know," he said, "I'm not much of a speechmaker. I don't talk much. But on behalf of my wife Theresa, I thank you."

Association members, most of whom are appointed by judges to represent people who have been declared incapacitated, acknowledged Schiavo was a controversial choice and they anticipate a backlash. After all, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush joined world leaders from the president to the pope in aligning themselves with Bob and Mary Schindler, the couple who fought their son-on-law's effort to remove the feeding tube that kept their severely brain-damaged daughter alive for 15 years.

But, group members said, Michael Schiavo's unwavering commitment to honoring his wife's wishes in the face of public scrutiny and enmity embodied the professionalism and compassion with which court-appointed guardians quietly carry out their duties every day.

"We see a lot of situations where family steps away," said association president-elect Michelle Kenney, a care manager and professional guardian in Broward County. "He stuck by. He didn't walk away."

Added past president Joan Nelson Hook, an attorney from New Port Richey: "He was an ordinary guardian who carried out his duties in extraordinary ways."

News of the award brought the same swift reaction - surprise - from both sides of the right-to-die case that divided a family and a nation, but for wildly divergent reasons.

"Yikes! That took a lot of courage," said Bill Allen, director of the bioethics program at the University of Florida. "It would have been easier for them to whisper, `Atta boy!' privately and not take such a public stand."

"Oh, my God, that's offensive," said Brother Paul O'Donnell, a Franciscan friar who serves as the Schindler family spokesman. "Michael Schiavo ... basically let her rot."

State Rep. Dennis Baxley, R-Ocala, who pushed legislation limiting the circumstances under which artificial sustenance and hydration could be withdrawn, called the recognition "ironic."

"There were a lot of issues that raised some questions about his credibility to act in her (Terri Schiavo's) best interest," Baxley said.

But Kenneth Goodman, a University of Miami bioethicist and the keynote speaker at the conference said the record speaks for itself. He noted that Michael Schiavo, a one-time restaurant manager, became a nurse to better care for his wife and took her to California for experimental treatment after her unexplained 1990 collapse consigned her to a persistent vegetative state.

"And then he's maligned and vilified and condemned when he decides to get on with his private life," Goodman said. "Frankly, what he said his wife wanted is what most reasonable people want. It's primitive to believe that human consciousness is not important. What most of us value about life is cognition and communication and interaction. We don't value simply not being dead."

Yet, association officials made it clear it is their job to adopt such "primitive" views if the incapacitated person they are appointed to represent held them. Conversely, it is their job to reject treatment or life-prolonging measures if their ward would have chosen to do the same.

"That is our main mission. We stand in their shoes," said association president Barbara Reiser, a public guardian in Miami.

Deciphering what Terri Schiavo would have wanted was at the core of the once-private family dispute that launched unprecedented but ultimately unsuccessful efforts in the Florida Legislature and Congress to keep her alive. Her feeding tube was disconnected in March, and she died 13 days later at age 41.

Though she never wrote down her wishes in the event she became incapacitated, her husband said his wife made it clear in casual conversations: She never wanted to be kept alive artificially, unaware of her surroundings, dependent on others for her every need.

But her parents' vehemently disagreed, saying their daughter was a devout Roman Catholic who would choose life no matter how she had to live. They also questioned their son-in-law's motives, accusing him of wanting his wife dead so he could inherit a malpractice settlement he won in her behalf.

However, like the guardianship association, the courts repeatedly found that Michael Schiavo acted in his wife's interests and carried out his guardianship duties professionally and compassionately.

As wellwishers lined up Friday night to congratulate Schiavo, he said the diamond-cut crystal award was the first public recognition of his actions, and he was deeply gratified by what it represented.

"These people are part of the silent majority," he said. "When Terri's wish was finally carried out, I had thousands and thousands of letters saying, `We are with you. We believe in you. You did the right thing.' Thousands."


Coming Soon!
Over 400 pages
Trafford Publishing: Our Fight4Terri

The first expose and sourcebook on the Terri Schindler-Schiavo case! Discover the true facts behind the most significant legal battle over constitutional rights of the disabled in history. Read the actual documents. Discover the dangers all Americans face with Terri's death!


Theresa Marie Schindler
December 3, 1963 ~ March 31, 2005
Light a candle For Terri at her online Memorial Website - Memorial website in memory of Theresa Schindler (1963-2005)

Cheryl Ford, RN ( is not affiliated with any other group and works to protect the rights of the disabled community.