Chantal Sebire, a mother of three, and a former school teacher was found dead on Wednesday, March 19. Two days before Sebire died, her appeal for the right to die was denied by the court of appeals. The ruling is in regards to laws adopted back in 2005 which did not allow doctors to conduct euthanasia.
Sebire was one of the 200 cases in the last 20 years that suffer from the rare nasal cancer known as esthesioneuroblastoma. The cancer had left Sebire disfigured and in pain. Before her death, Sebire explained that she has lost her ability to see, taste, and smell. She also talked about how children would run away from her while she was walking down the street.
Her case had sparked much debate. Sebire’s plea for the right to die was even televised throughout France and garnered attention from the rest of Europe. It has caused Roselyne Bachelot, the Minister of Health, to call for the legislation to be examined.
“[Ms Sebire] has raised extremely serious questions of life, suffering and death,” Bachelot said as she was quoted by the French newspaper, Le Monde.
Before dying, Sebire was planning to go to Switzerland where euthanasia is legal. As it is confirmed that Sebire did not die of natural causes, it is still unknown on how she had died.
There is a strong possibility that Sebire may have taken her own life.