Kara Tippetts: Pastor's wife who urged terminally ill Brittany Maynard not to take her life dies of cancer

Mother-of-four sparked debate by writing public letter to woman planning to take lethal drugs

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The Independent US

A Christian writer with terminal cancer who urged another sufferer not to take her own life, has passed away from the disease.

"Kara Tippetts went home to Jesus on March 22 2015, after a long battle with breast cancer," said an update on Ms Tippetts' blog, Mundane Faithfulness.

Kara Tippetts, 38, the wife of a pastor and a mother of four children who was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago, created headlines last year when she publicly urged Brittany Maynard to reconsider her decision to take her own life with the assistance of a doctor.

In an open letter to Ms Maynard that went viral on the internet, Ms Tippetts wrote that suffering “is not the absence of goodness”.

Brittany Maynard pictured with her husband Dan Diaz

“Dear heart, we simply disagree,” she said. “In your choosing your own death, you are robbing those that love you with the such tenderness, the opportunity of meeting you in your last moments and extending you love in your last breaths.”

Ms Maynard, who was 29, took her own life last November by using lethal dugs prescribed by her physician in Oregon. Having been diagnosed earlier in the year with a malignant brain tumour, she chose to die at home, “as she intended, peacefully in her bedroom, in the arms of her loved ones”.

Ms Tippetts had turned her blog into a journal of her experiences after she was diagnosed. In December, she entered a hospice for palliative care, the Washington Post reported.

“My little body has grown tired of battle, and treatment is no longer helping,” she wrote recently. “But what I see, what I know, what I have is Jesus. He has still given me breath, and with it I pray I would live well and fade well.”

Jay Lyons, a Tippetts family, raised $15,000 to create a documentary about her and her husband.

Ms Maynard triggered a debate about the right to die and laws that prevent terminally ill patients from opting to take their own lives. At the moment, only Oregon, Vermont and Washington have laws that permit it.

“Goodbye to all my dear friends and family that I love,” she wrote on her Facebook page. “Today is the day I have chosen to pass away with dignity in the face of my terminal illness, this terrible brain cancer that has taken so much from me - but would have taken so much more.”