44-years-old Dave Adox was facing the end of his two year battle with ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. He needed a ventilator to breathe and couldn’t move any part of his body, except his eyes. Once he started to struggle with his eyes – his only way to communicate – Adox decided it was time to die.
He wanted to donate his organs, to give other people a chance for a longer life. To do this, he’d need to go off his breathing support in a hospital.
“I was always interested in organ donation and had checked the box on my license,” Adox said at his home in South Orange, New Jersey, through a machine that speaks for him. He laboriously spelled out these words, letter by letter, by focusing his eyes on a tablet. “When I got diagnosed with ALS at 42 and the disease paralyzed my entire body in six months, I definitely developed a greater appreciation of the value of the working human body.”
Adox and his husband, Danni Michaeli, made a plan. They would go to University Hospital, in Newark, where Dave had been treated, and have his ventilator disconnected. Continue reading
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