Fight Over Terminally Ill Toddler Ends With His Death - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Fight Over Terminally Ill Toddler Ends With His Death

A 19 month old in the middle of a legal battle has passed away.

Emilio Gonzales suffered from a degenerative condition called Leigh's Disease. As Emilio fought the disease in a Texas hospital, his mother fought doctors who tried to take him off a ventilator. Doctors said Emilio was in severe pain and should not treat him any longer.

"To have to continue to do that under those circumstances is really very contrary to everything that they've been trained to do," says Michael Regier, who is the Vice President of Legal Services at Seton Family of Hospitals in Austin.

Yet Emilio died here in the hospital on his own, cutting short a long legal battle between his mom and the hospital to keep the child alive.

Jerri Ward, who is the Gonzales' family lawyer, says, "He left on God's terms. He left on the terms that Catarina felt was the best for her son which was to die when his body could no longer live,"

Family and friends are now making funeral arrangements for Emilio, while the hospital works to comfort a mom it battled in court.

"All we can do is the best that we can do, and try and treat her like we would any other family, any other mother who's lost a child. There will be a sense of relief that Emilio's not suffering."

Says Jerri Ward, "At least he did die when God took him and not because his tube was pulled."

Story and video courtesy of the Associated Press and CNN Newsource.

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