A young California girl, who had been on life support for four years after a routine tonsil surgery, has died. She was only 17-year-old.
According to NPR, the family’s lawyer, Christopher Dolan wrote in a statement that Jahi McMath died on June 22 in New Jersey as a result from bleeding due to liver failure. She died at home surrounded by her family.
Nailah Winkfield, McMath’s mother, said that the family is “devastated by the loss of her daughter” but that Jahi ultimately “has forced the world to rethink the issue of brain death.”
As we previously reported, Jahi had been living on ventilator since 2014 after she underwent a tonsillectomy at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland in California. Her doctors claimed that she suffered from a series of complications that caused irreversible brain damage. Soon after, a coroner issued a death certificate.
But her mother, a devout Christian, refused to take her child off of life support because she believed her then 13-year-old was still alive. She claimed that she believed this because Jahi moved her finger and toes. However, doctors repeatedly told Winkfield that Jahi was brain dead, which consitutes death, NPR noted.
Last year, a California judge ruled to extend Jahi’s hospital support, but her family ended up moving her to a New Jersey facility that was willing to give her health care and keep her on a ventilator.
CNN reported that Jahi’s mother is thankful for the last four years she had with her daughter, despite not being able to communicate with her.
“My daughter knew I was there and that I loved her, I knew she was there and that she loved me too.”
Her family plans on having her funeral in California.
Jahi McMath, Teen On Life Support For Four Years After Tonsil Surgery, Passed Way was originally published on hellobeautiful.com