AVE MARIA, Fla. – Four years after the death of Terri Schiavo, family, friends, and complete strangers packed the Ave Maria Oratory Tuesday evening to remember the Florida woman at the center of a national right to die debate for years.
"Everyday people are being killed the same way she was killed," Schiavo’s brother Bobby Schindler says.
Bobby Schindler and his family are still fighting for what they call Terri’s cause.
Terri died on March 31, 2005, after her feeding tube was removed at the request of her husband. It’s a move her family fought against for years.
"Terri was very much alive,” Schindler says.
Father Frank Pavone came all the way from New York to preside over today’s service. He says people need to learn from Terri’s case.
"She wasn't at the end of her life that is the point. She was disabled. Some people thought her life wasn't worth living, and they killed her,” Father Pavone says.
Avow Hospice Vice President and Executive Medical Director Dr. Paul Mitchell says Terri Schiavo’s case is a perfect example of why people need to have a living will or a power of attorney to be their voice when they no longer can.
“At any age, its important. That’s something that young people really need to consider and think about. Anything can happen to anyone at anytime,” Dr. Mitchell says.
Terri Schiavo did not have a living will or power of attorney. The court system ruled that her husband ultimately was her surrogate, or person to make the decision on her life.