(Erick Muñoz, husband of Marlise Munoz, is escorted out of court by his attorney Heather L. King, right, Friday, January 24, 2014 in Fort Worth, Texas. Photo via AP.)
At 11:30 a.m. yesterday morning, doctors at John Peter Smith Hospital ended life support for Marlise Muñoz, a pregnant wife and mother who had collapsed at her home in Haltom City on the night of November 26 while making a bottle for her fifteen-month-old son, Mateo. The details of this case are heartbreaking. Marlise, who was fourteen weeks pregnant at the time, appeared to be in good health but was apparently stricken by a pulmonary embolism. Her husband, Erick, discovered her on the floor of their kitchen perhaps an hour or so later. Though she was still alive, she had stopped breathing for an unknown period of time, which meant that her unborn baby wasn’t receiving oxygen either. And that’s when a terrible private tragedy for the Muñoz family began to play out in a very public way.