Kevin Roster took his prescription for medical aid in dying and died peacefully on July 26, 2019. Click here to read the press release.
Kevin, a terminally ill, 36-year-old native New Yorker who moved from his longtime home in New Jersey to California so he could access its medical aid-in-dying law to peacefully end his suffering from sarcoma, died peacefully in his sleep shortly after taking the aid-in-dying medication, surrounded by his wife, caretaker and best friend, at his apartment in Rancho Cordova.
He spent the final months of his life raising awareness about his disease and advocating for the authorization of state medical aid-in-dying laws across the country.
In June of 2019, with a prognosis of only weeks to live, traveled to Las Vegas to compete in his final World Series of Poker to raise awareness about his disease and his advocacy for medical aid in dying. Kevin’s story generated news coverage in California, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and in national media outlets, reaching millions of people. As a result of widespread news coverage about his story, 2012 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Champion Greg Merson put up the $10,000 entry fee, so Kevin could fulfill his last wish by playing in the WSOP main event in early July while wearing sarcoma education gear.
The following excerpt is from an op-ed, I’m dying from cancer. I have to move across the country to die on my own terms, by Kevin that first appeared in USA Today on June 7, 2019.
I am a 36-year-old dad who is dying of a rare cancer called sarcoma, which invades the body’s connective tissues, including the nerves, muscles, joints, bone, fat and blood vessels.
Sarcoma makes up only about 1% of adult cancers and is often diagnosed when it has already become too large to cure. Nearly 6,000 people die each year from it, according to the Sarcoma Foundation of America. As a result, I have dedicated much of my remaining life to raising awareness about sarcoma via a blog, YouTube videos and playing semiprofessional poker wearing sarcoma education gear.
Sarcoma has taken a huge toll on my health, but also on my family and personal life. When I received my original diagnosis in 2017, my wife and I owned a successful family business that specialized in buying and selling collectible items, including, ironically, items from the estates of deceased people.
Click here to read the rest of Kevin’s op-ed.
With months to live, Kevin moved from New Jersey to Sacramento to utilize California’s medical aid-in-dying law, but first, he plans to win the World Series of Poker:
Joey Ingram’s Poker Life podcast – His Dying Wish Is To Win A WSOP Bracelet