The case has drawn international attention and the support of
pro-life groups, including one founded by the family of Terri
Schiavo, a Florida woman who died in 2005 after a 15-year battle
over whether to keep her body alive in a persistent vegetative
The girl, Jahi McMath, was admitted to hospital on Dec. 9 to have
her tonsils removed as well as other procedures performed in an
effort to treat sleep apnea. After the surgery, McMath, who was 13
at the time, began to bleed profusely, went into cardiac arrest and
suffered brain swelling.
"Jahi's school, E.C. Reems Academy of Technology and Arts in
Oakland, California has confirmed they will honor her and the
diploma will be accepted for her, by a family member," according to
a statement on a Facebook community page supporting her. "Jahi,
definitely feels all the love."
McMath's uncle, Omari Sealey, said in a Twitter message the school
would give an "honorary 8th-grade diploma for Jahi to a family
member", a local NBC-affiliate reported. The school's graduation
ceremony is slated for Friday.
Reuters could not independently verify the statements. The school
did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
[to top of second column]
The hospital declared Jahi brain-dead three days after her
tonsillectomy and made plans to remove her from a ventilator.
Her family has fought in state and federal court to keep her on life
support. McMath was then taken to a long-term care facility.
(Reporting by Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Editing by Robert Birsel)
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