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Judge Temporarily Bars Man From Disconnecting Daughter’s Life Support With AM-Life-Support

January 30, 1993

Judge Temporarily Bars Man From Disconnecting Daughter’s Life Support With AM-Life-Support Ruling

ST. LOUIS (AP) _ A judge temporarily barred a man from disconnecting his brain-damaged daughter’s life-support system, three days after the state’s high court ruled he could.

Circuit Judge John Kintz issued the restraining order Friday on request from a woman who, though unrelated to the family, said she should replace Peter Busalacchi as the guardian of his daughter, Christine.

Elizabeth W. McDonald said she has known of Ms. Busalacchi for more than two years, has observed the hearings in her case and believes she is more qualified than the woman’s father to care for her.

Representatives of Direct Action, an anti-abortion group in St. Louis, said McDonald was an anti-abortion activist who had been arrested several times during demonstrations. No one answered the telephone at her home in Brentwood.

″Basically our complaint is her guardian is not acting in her best interests by threatening to not feed her,″ said the woman’s attorney, David Danis. ″It’s not over until they kill her and hopefully they won’t.″

Danis described McDonald, a self-employed artist, as ″a person interested in somebody whose life is in jeopardy.″

Ms. Busalacchi, 22, is being cared for at a state-run hospital in St. Louis. She has been in a persistent vegetative state since a 1987 car accident. The Missouri Supreme Court dismissed the long-running right-to-die case Tuesday, affirming Busalacchi’s authority to take his daughter from the hospital or to remove her life support system.

At that time, Busalacchi’s attorney, William Colby, said Ms. Busalacchi would continue for now on life support.

Colby was out of the country Friday and there was no answer at the Busalacchi home in St. Charles.

Kintz, sworn in only Thursday, set a hearing for Feb. 8.

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