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Michele Reiter: Commends column’s courage, openness

To the editor:

I am writing to commend the courage of Laurie Loisel who wrote recently about her father’s death by suicide. I don’t condone violent death whether by suicide or homicide. I am a nonviolent Buddhist and anti-gun advocate. Nevertheless, Loisel’s disclosure is important on a number of levels.

First, it makes it clear that assisted suicide is a necessary law and we must continue our efforts to get it passed in the commonwealth. What if Loisel’s father had a choice of a dignified death by means that would not result in his disfigurement or subsequent fear on the part of his survivors?

And, when our time on this Earth is nearly over, could we each have the right, and the privilege of choosing the means of our death? Loisel selflessly shared with us her personal story including its anguish and mixed-emotions. It took considerable courage and self-acceptance for her to have done so. I am moved and thankful for her willingness to publicly disclose on a subject that, while meaningful and important to us all, is hardly talked about openly in our society.

Michele Reiter


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