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Casey Kasem no longer receiving food or fluids

by | Jun 13, 2014

 

By Dave Andrusko

 Jean Kasem, right, the wife of  Casey Kasem, with her attorney Joel Paget. Mrs. Kasem fought unsuccessfully to ensure that her ailing husband receive food, fluids, and medications.


Jean Kasem, right, the wife of Casey Kasem, with her attorney Joel Paget. Mrs. Kasem fought unsuccessfully to ensure that her ailing husband receive food, fluids, and medications.

Once Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Daniel S. Murphy reversed himself on Wednesday, the daughter of famed radio and television icon Casey Kasem quickly moved to end the administration of food, fluids, and medication for Kasem who is said to suffer from a form of dementia.

On Monday Murphy had ruled in favor of Jean Kasem, Mr. Kasem’s wife of 33 years, and against Kerri Kasem, Mr. Kasem’s daughter by his first marriage. But despite pleas from Mrs. Kasem to continue administering the bare essentials, Murphy changed his mind, based on what he heard from Kerri Kasem’s attorney. According to the Associated Press

Murphy reviewed additional medical records on Wednesday and concluded that Kasem would endure more pain if he was given food or fluids, attorney Troy Martin said. Martin, who represents Kasem’s daughter Kerri, presented the updated information to Murphy during an emergency hearing.

He also presented the judge with documents in which Kasem stated he did not want his life prolonged by food or fluids if he was mentally incapacitated

But Steve Haney, an attorney for Jean Kasem, told the AP, “It’s just flat out wrong.” The AP reported that

“Haney said Murphy’s ruling wasn’t based on sworn declarations from doctors and relied on an outdated document in which Casey Kasem said he didn’t want to receive food or fluids if he was incapacitated. As of last week, Kasem still had the ability to communicate nonverbally, Haney said.”

The New York Post reported that as Mrs. Kasem left the courtroom, she said, “You have blood on your hands.”

“We’re really deeply disturbed by the court’s ruling,” Haney told the Los Angeles Times. “Jean Kasem is broken-hearted.” He described the ruling as “the functional equivalent of a death sentence.”

Kerri Kasem said her father was in the “dying process” and that “The body does not want or require food or water anymore in the dying process.”

The Los Angeles Times reported that Jean Kasem said Kerri’s motives were less noble—“access a $2 million trust set to be split evenly between Kerri, her two full siblings, and her half-sister [Liberty] from Kasem’s marriage to Jean Kasem.”

Jean Kasem and Kerri Kasem have been fighting in court since May over Mr. Kasem’s care. Once Judge Murphy gave Kerri Kasem temporary authority to make medical decisions for her father, food and fluids were stopped.

According to the entertainment site TMZ,

“Casey Kasem is living out the final days of his life by listening to the best days … his family has been playing old recordings of his ‘American Top 40’ show while he lay dying in hospice.”

Bobby Schindler, whose sister Terri Schindler Schiavo, died after nearly two weeks without food or water, had a very different perspective on what is to come. He wrote

“Once Kasem begins the process of dying by having his food and water removed, he will endure a death that no family member should ever have to witness. It is cruel and barbaric and could take days, and often weeks to play itself out, torturing not only the patient, but those who love him as well.”

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