Man thanks right-to-die activist Sean Davison for helping cousin take own life

The cousin of one of the men who was helped to die by Dignity SA founder Professor Sean Davison has thanked the University of the Western Cape (UWC) academic for his actions.

Russell called into The John Maytham Show on Cape Talk on Wednesday and spoke of his admiration for the right-to-die activist.

Russell's cousin Justin Varian had motor-neuron disease and was one of three men euthanasia advocate Davison assisted in taking their own lives between 2013 and 2015.

I think what Sean did was absolutely fantastic.

Russell, cousin of Justin Varian

Speaking to show stand-in Africa Melane, Russell described the last few years of his cousin's life.

There was absolutely no quality of life, he was unable to speak.

Russell, cousin of Justin Varian

Russell says as Justin's condition worsened his desperation was clear.

He asked my brother and myself if we couldn't end his life. I would have loved to have done it, but I knew that it was too much of a sacrifice, I would probably end up in jail.

Russell, cousin of Justin Varian

Davison first came to prominence in 2006 after helping his 85-year-old mother, Patricia, end her life in New Zealand.

He was charged with her murder but pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of assisted suicide and was sentenced to five months detention.

On Wednesday the Cape Town High Court sentenced him to three years house arrest and eight years behind bars suspended for five years.

Russell shared his thoughts on the sentence.

It's a pity that his sentence is such that he cannot render that service again.

Russell, cousin of Justin Varian

Listen as caller Russell thanks Sean Davison for helping to end his cousin's life:


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