90-Year-Old Woman Dies After Giving Up Her Ventilator for a Younger Patient

Suzanne Hoylaerts l ARASH KHAMOOSHI/POLARIS

Acts of altruism have been striking us with awe during this pandemic, and understandably so. We have come to believe in recent years that the world has lost its sense of humanity and endorsed selfishness instead.

This global health threat has come to prove us wrong. Giving willingly your life to a stranger, that’s the ultimate act of altruism and human love.

Suzanne Hoylaerts, a 90-year-old woman in Belgium, is one of these people who gave her life to a stranger, all willing to suffer until her demise so a younger person doesn’t.

Suzanne got affected by COVD-19 and was hospitalized at the end of March as she was suffering from respiratory issues.

At the hospital, she refused ventilator treatment, asking that a younger patient get the ventilator meant for her. She told the doctors, “You don’t need to put me on a ventilator. Keep it for the younger patients, I have had a beautiful life.”

Considering the shortage of ventilators all countries are enduring, the doctors had to yield to her decision. Her health deteriorated quickly, and she died two days later.

The courageous lady didn’t hesitate in giving up her only hope for life by taking that humane and selfless decision to give a chance of life to a younger person. Her story made headlines across the world.

“That’s just the way she was,” Suzanne’s daughter, Judith, said about her mother’s altruistic deed.

Judith had left her mother at the emergency when diagnosed and never saw her again. She couldn’t visit her mother at the hospital or even attend her funeral after her death.

Judith and her siblings received moral support and condolences from all around the world, although they deem that their mother did nothing unexpected or special. According to them, her sacrifice was a perfect reflection of her personality.

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