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The Nation

A brain-damaged man who requires artificial feeding may be removed from a hospital and allowed to starve to death, the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled. In a 4-3 opinion, justices granted the request of Patricia Brophy to stop providing food and water to her husband, Paul E. Brophy Sr., 49, a former firefighter in Easton, who has been in a coma for 3 1/2 years. Before suffering a ruptured blood vessel in the brain in 1983, Brophy often told his family he would not want to be kept alive artificially, his wife said.


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