Jean Kasem petitioned court to demand her husband be put back on life support, believing that he was not near death
Casey Kasem’s wife filed legal documents with the California Court of Appeals to try and reverse a judge’s order that allowed Casey’s daughter, Kerri, to remove her father from life support. This included food and water. Justice Paul Turner quickly denied her request, TheWrap has learned.
In his statement, Justice Turner affirmed that the current direction of Casey Kasem’s care is in line with his 2007 power of attorney, which stated, “If the extension of my life would result in a mere biological existence, devoid of cognitive function, with no reasonable hope for normal functioning, then I do not desire any form of life-sustaining procedures, including nutrition and hydration unless necessary for alleviation of pain, or, if life-sustaining treatment has been instituted, I desire that it be withdrawn.”
Jean alleged in her court filing that she was certain her husband was not at death’s door. Casey suffers from Lewy body disease, a form of dementia which has left him unable to talk, move, or nourish himself.
Justice Turner’s denial also cited the fact that Kerri Kasem had been granted conservator status over her father’s health care, allowing her to make all health care decisions for him. The document further details the recommendations Kerri Kasem has been getting from Casey’s doctors at St. Anthony Hospital in Tacoma, Washington.
On June 6, they were advised that his digestive system had stopped digesting nutrients, among other problems. On June 9, Dr. Juan C. Iregui recommended that she consider discontinuation of hydration and artificial nutrition, as he believed it was worsening Casey’s respiratory system.
Dr. Iregui further concluded that Kasem was dying from sepsis and underlying terminal dementia. Continuation of artificial nutrition and hydration at this point would only add suffering and prolong an already uncomfortable dying process. He recommended, instead, comfort measures with sedation and analgesia, as well as a transition to hospice care.
The court therefore decreed that Kerri Kasem was acting in accordance to her father’s wishes regarding end-of-life care, and concluded that there was no legal ground to stay the June 11 order discontinuing nutrition and hydration.
Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.