conversation with Dr Philip Nitschke at the tea break. He said he had purchased nitrogen in 2012. He wanted to be prepared.
As the years went by, David soldiered on. That was until shortly before his 104th birthday when he tried to end his life. This attempt failed. The outcome was a frustrated, desperate man who was fast-losing his dignity. This is when his daughter, Karen Goodall, emailed Exit asking for help.
By this time, David was in the clutches of the medical profession. A second suicide attempt was out of the question. Shockingly, the doctors were threatening to certify him (due to his failed suicide attempt and ongoing frailty). The only choice that remained open to David was the ‘Swiss Option’.
When Philip suggested this to Karen, David was quick to say ‘yes’. This was a bit surprising. After all, the 24-hour trip from ‘downunder’ to the centre of Europe is no mean feat at any age. But make that flight David did, in large part because of the very successful Exit crowd-funding campaign which raised the funds to upgrade David to business class.
On arrival in Basel, David saw both the doctor who would prescribe the Nembutal and a psychiatrist who validated that he was of sound mind. This was considered necessary because of this extreme old and the fact that he was not sick.
Once fluent in German, to his absolute credit, David wanted to have his psychiatric review conducted entirely in German. It took quite a few minutes of too-ing and fro-ing until he acquiesced and allowed it to proceed in English with translation. You have to admire the man’s tenacity (and his German).