Woman in life support controversy dies

CREATED Mar 7, 2014

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New information in a life or death case that's rocked Southwest Florida! An 88 year-old woman who's been on life support at Cape Coral Hospital. Just two days after her family went to court and successfully fought to keep the hospital from taking her off life support.....a major development. Four In Your Corner Investigator Dave Culbreth broke this story and has the latest.

Lee Memorial Health Systems took it to court last week asking a judge to decide if an 88 year old woman should be taken off life support. It was late Wednesday when a judge ruled against the hospital saying the decision is up to the family. Thirty hours later, the woman died.

"I believe she's probably in heaven with her loved ones and she's smiling that a hospital, a business or a government didn't get their way on saying who lives and who dies," said her son, Michael Magoon. Marceline Magoon, 88, passed away at 4:30 Friday morning. She had been on life support; on a respirator and on kidney dialysis. The family says nurses told them that she got weaker and weaker overnight. The family then decided to take her off the dialysis. Nurses told them her blood pressure dropped and the family says it decided at that point not to resuscitate her because it would do more harm than good.

Lee Memorial Health Systems filed documents in court last Wednesday asking a judge to take her off life support. Then the court sent Mr. Magoon an email saying he had to be in court two days later. "They rushed it so quick," explained Magoon. They used some law that had to have it done in 72 hours and since the weekend was within that 72 hours, I had to show up to court and I didn't know nothing about it. The hospital should have, someone should have, let me know".

In court Tuesday, a judge ruled the hospital could not take her off life support. "The next time I finally do get an attorney pro bono that's willing to take the case because he believes this is a true injustice and without an attorney I think they would have beat me up real bad in court," said Magoon.

What does he think his mother would think about all this? "I'm sure she's deeply distressed about the whole situation. But, I believe she's probably smiling right now," smiled Magoon.

Just after the judge made his decision Wednesday afternoon, we asked the hospital spokeswoman for an updated comment about Lee Memorial Health Systems losing the case. we never got one. When I asked her again late this afternoon, almost 48 hours later, she said we are not getting any comment from Lee Memorial.