Stevenage widow’s support for assisted suicide in the UK

Alan Davey with his devoted wife Nikki

Alan Davey with his devoted wife Nikki - Credit: Archant

The widow of a man who has died two years after being diagnosed with motor neurone disease is advocating assisted suicide being legalised in the UK.

Alan Davey gradually lost his mobility, speech and ability to swallow or breathe properly.

Alan Davey gradually lost his mobility, speech and ability to swallow or breathe properly. - Credit: Archant

The widow of a man who has died two years after being diagnosed with motor neurone disease is advocating assisted suicide being legalised in the UK.

Alan Davey, of Coopers Close in Stevenage, was diagnosed with MND in March 2014 after he had started slurring his speech and had problems with his grip and balance.

MND is a progressive degenerative disease which leads to increasing loss of mobility and difficulties with speech, swallowing and breathing. There is no cure.

When the Comet spoke to Alan in September last year, he was in despair that the Assisted Suicide Bill was rejected in Parliament. It would have allowed some terminally ill adults to end their lives with medical supervision.


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He said: “We are able to put animals out of their misery, but not humans. Unless I can get myself to Switzerland – where there is an assisted dying clinic – I’m going to have to suffer.”

His widow Nikki, who met Alan 40 years ago when she was just 17, says she hopes assisted suicide is legalised in the UK in the future. She said: “Alan had wanted to go to Switzerland. He was so unhappy he was so dependent on people, but didn’t realise he had to do it all ahead of time. He tried to access it and thought I could make the appointments for him, but he would have had to do it all, and he left it too late.”

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Before Alan died on July 6, aged just 61, he could not speak or swallow, had very limited mobility and great difficulty breathing.

Nikki said: “There really wasn’t anything the poor man could do for himself. He was choking on his own dribble. The last six months have been like living with a ghost. He was more or less stuck in the one spot. Now he’s got his dignity back.”

Alan, who was a keen squash and tennis player, had two children – 21-year-old Helena and 19-year-old Francis. Next April, Helena is due to get married. Nikki explained: “We managed to get Alan to record his father-of-the-bride speech, but it’s in bits and needs to be pieced together and put with photos.” Can you help? Email news@thecomet.net or call 01438 866200.

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