Stuff.co 15 October 2013
A coroner is calling for Parliament to make up its mind about euthanasia after an elderly woman chose to suffocate herself with a handmade contraption in her Lower Hutt home.
Widow Edna Gluyas, 85, waited for her family to leave from a visit and lay down in her bed for a final time, alone, before setting in motion the process that would kill her on August 3, 2011.
Less than two hours later, her daughter returned to find her dead by what Wellington Regional Coroner Ian Smith has determined “euthanasia by suffocation”.
In his report, Smith calls for Parliament to confront the issue of euthanasia – a topic that has long been dodged.
“Once again this death raises the vexed issue of euthanasia and, as I have recorded in past cases, this process simply will not go away, and it will be necessary for Parliament to address this matter yet again.”
Gluyas lived alone, in a suburban street in Belmont. Her husband had died in 1988. She was a firm believer in euthanasia, had attended seminars, and owned a book on the subject.