Sungeon Grace Lee, the woman at the center of a highly publicized right to die case last year, died yesterday at the age of 28.
Lee, a New York City bank manager was diagnosed with a cancer tumor on her brain stem that caused her to have seizures, before finally leaving her paralyzed from the neck down and unable to breathe on her own without the use of a ventilator.
Her case gained national attention after she battled her parents Man Ho Lee, a pastor at the Antioch Mission Church in Flushing, Queens, and Jin Ah Lee, for the right to die. Although she wanted to be taken off life support, her deeply religious parents argued that it would have been tantamount to suicide and sought a restraining order to stop it. Although, Lee won the battle, she eventually changed her mind.
“This young lady was determined through the courts to vindicate her right to die her way,” stated her legal representative David Smith of Garden City. Though she did not finally remove herself from ventilators, she got her way in a different sense by appeasing her parents.”
Grace eventually fell into a deep coma, from which she never woke. At the time of her death she had been living at her parents’ home in Douglaston and was receiving bursing care and pain management.