Jim Wiggins

Jim Wiggins (1935-2017) was a professor of religion for 39 years and advocated for medical aid in dying in New York.

"My wife and I talk about how we'd like to die, and how we wouldn't. I don't think we're unique in this regard - we'd like to die free of pain, humanely and surrounded by loved ones."

Jim and his wife have both been diagnosed with multiple forms of cancer. This has led the couple to speak openly about how they would like to die.

As someone of the Christian faith, Jim does not believe that God intends for anyone to suffer. Jim believes that the option of aid in dying provides comfort and peace of mind at the end of life and that it’s an option all New Yorkers deserve.

He is relieved to know that legislators in New York are considering a bill that would honor the autonomy of terminally ill people to decide how and when they die, when death is inevitable.

This is an excerpt from Jim’s op-ed originally published on Syracuse.com:

“For richer or poorer, in sickness and in health…” for my wife and me, our vows might well have included “with or without cancer.” These days, it’s with cancer. While we’re each dealing with our own kinds of cancer, in the past both of us have painfully witnessed close family members die from the disease. It’s put mortality in deep focus for us, and makes us think hard about end-of-life issues.

When it’s clear that our time has come, how would we want to die? Should we have to suffer as our loved ones did? No – we want options, including the option of aid in dying.

Read the rest of Jim’s Op-Ed, Syracuse couple seeks another option at the end of life, here.

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