1.29.2010

the last doctor of last resort: esquire story on dr. warren hern

A few months after Dr. George Tiller was assassinated, Esquire did a long feature on Dr. Warren Hern, now thought to be the last doctor in the US to perform "last resort" abortions. I missed it at the time, so perhaps you did, too.
The young couple flew into Wichita bearing, in the lovely swell of the wife's belly, a burden of grief. They came from a religious tradition where large families are celebrated, and they wanted this baby, and it was very late in her pregnancy. But the doctors recommended abortion. They said that with her complications, there were only two men skilled enough to pull it off. One was George Tiller, a Wichita doctor who specialized in late abortions.

They arrived in Wichita on Sunday, May 31. As they drove to their hotel, a Holiday Inn just two blocks from the Reformation Lutheran Church, they saw television cameras. They wondered what was going on, a passing curiosity quickly forgotten.

But when they got to their room, the phone was ringing. Her father was on the line. "There was some doctor who was shot who does abortions," he said.

They turned on CNN. Dr. Tiller had just been killed, shot in the head as he passed out church leaflets. In their shock, they mixed up the clinic and the church: We were supposed to be there. What if it had happened while we were there? What if he couldn't complete the procedure?

Now there is only one doctor left.

Full story here. Many thanks to M Yass for sending.

1 comment:

L-girl said...

Scott Roeder, who murdered George Tiller while he attended church, has been found guilty of first-degree murder.

The Canadian pro-choice blogosphere is jubilant. Not sure why. I suppose because they thought the courts might not punish the killer sufficiently, or even let him off? That was not a real possibility.

Dr. Tiller is dead. I can't summon much joy for his killer's conviction.