Family publishes harrowing images of dying mother's battle with MS

Flora Lorimer's family release shocking images to persuade politicians to legalise assisted suicide.

The family of a great grandmother who died from multiple sclerosis has published harrowing photographs of her final hours.

Flora Lorimer's husband and daughter say she wanted to die for two years before she finally passed away last month aged 68.

Tom, 69, and Tracey Taylor's wish is that the shocking images will highlight Flora's battle and persuade politicians to make assisted suicide legal in Scotland.

Flora was diagnosed with the disease at 21 years old after noticing she had started dragging her leg.

Her condition worsened and it got to the stage when it was taking an hour to walk half a mile to the shops from home. Before long the much-loved great grandmother needed a wheelchair.

Ms Taylor, from Glenrothes, Fife, told STV News: : "She cried all the time, in pain, all the time. I would come and visit every day and she would say to me, 'I don't want to be here tomorrow. Please take my life, I don't want to be here tomorrow.'

Frail: Flora poses in wheelchair with daughter Tracey Taylor.
Frail: Flora poses in wheelchair with daughter Tracey Taylor. Tracey Taylor

"She'd had enough and we couldn't do anything to help her - nothing."

Asked why they had taken the decision to release the images, Ms Taylor said: "Everybody needs to see why we are fighting for this. People don't see these pictures. These are the ones that are hidden away and they need to be shown.

"I got agreement from my mum. She wanted everyone to see why we are fighting for this and why she did want to die.

"It's happening everywhere all over the world and it shouldn't be. We should have the right to make our own decision. We just want to make it legal. We shouldn't even have to ask anybody to be able to do this.

Battle: Flora was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at 21.
Battle: Flora was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at 21. Tracey Taylor

"Our own doctor should be able to say these are the rules set out... you're not going to get any better, you're never going to get any better, you're going to get worse. This is a tablet, or a drink, that you can take whenever you feel like taking it to let you go whenever you want to go."

Mr Lorimer added: ""We were thinking about going to Switzerland (where assisted suicide is legal) but the money put a stop to that.

"I had the morphine, I had the sleeping pills. It could have been quite easy but I think it was just selfish, I didn't want to lose her. I knew she was in pain, I knew she wanted to go.

"The thought of going to jail didn't bother me but I just couldn't do it. She wanted me to do it."

Dying: Family publish images of Flora's final hours.
Dying: Family publish images of Flora's final hours. Tracey Taylor

Flora's condition began to dramatically worsen around two years ago when she lost the function in her hands and became too weak to even text friends.

She lost the function to do anything for herself and became completely bed bound around a year ago.

It was from then, her grieving daughter and husband say, that Flora began to express her wish to end her battle with the disease.

Ms Taylor went on: "She had no leg use, no arm use, couldn't wipe her nose, had to ask to have her head scratched and then eventually she couldn't even talk. She could hardly communicate with us.

"She found it very hard. We could hear her, just, but she found it very hard to talk to us.

Plight: Flora's husband Tom lies with her before she loses MS fight.
Plight: Flora's husband Tom lies with her before she loses MS fight. Tracey Taylor

"I couldn't kill my mum. I wanted to but I couldn't. I couldn't do that. I wanted the doctors to do that. I wanted the doctors to help her do it herself.

"She needed to do it herself, not us doing it. Whenever she was ready we would have all got together, let her take her pill, her wee drink of juice, let her go to sleep with all of us round her and drift away.

"But it wasn't like that. It wasn't like that at all. We were all around her but it wasn't peaceful."

"She lay in her bed for over a year not moving, not doing anything, just lying there getting bed sores everywhere. She suffered - torture.

"She was tortured for two years because we couldn't do anything."

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