Baby’s Death

* Re “A Baby’s Death, a Town’s Pain,” July 26: As sad as it is, baby Conor was dead when the paramedics arrived at his house. He was still dead when he arrived at the hospital. That Dr. Eugene Turner was able to get his heart beating and his lungs pumping, if even temporarily, is a testament to the wonders of modern medicine and to the heroic lengths that we will undertake to preserve life.

Was baby Conor in better shape than Turner thought? Apparently, he was able to breathe on his own and his color was improving. Would Conor have made it through the night, had there been no interference? Probably not. Did Conor have any chance for a full recovery? Certainly not after being deprived of oxygen for 40 minutes.

Should Turner have called the boy’s parents so that they could make an informed choice? Yes, he should have. Was smothering Conor the most compassionate course of action under the circumstances? I think so. Did Turner break the law by doing so? Yes, he did.

Occasionally we run up against a paradox that shows us that what is right is not what is legal.