Lisa Vigil Schattinger and her mother, Janet Rowe, presented to two fantastic groups while Janet visited from Oregon in July. In addition to Janet’s experience with her husband, Dr. Jack Rowe, using Oregon’s Death with Dignity Act in 2014, Janet is a retired RN. She currently volunteers with Compassion & Choices and has been a Hospice volunteer for 20 years, following her sister’s death from complications of breast cancer.
First came the West Shore Unitarian Universalist Church’s Elder Support Group, hosted by Paul Foster and Sally Follett. Then came the LGBT Cleveland Community Center’s SAGE Group, hosted by Mary Beth Bartholomew.
Both of these opportunities came about after introductions by Judith Allen and the Rev. Mary Grigolia. These meetings led to full and comprehensive discussions about the current state of death with dignity style laws as well as activity happening in Ohio. Additionally, end-of-life planning topics such as advance directives, appointing healthcare proxies and the option of VSED (Voluntary Stopping of Eating and Drinking) were explored. The importance of open communication with loved ones, support systems and medical communities is always paramount in these discussion.