(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) – Scientist David Goodall, 104, has died after choosing to end his life at a clinic in Switzerland, a right-to-die organisation says.
The lauded London-born ecologist and botanist, who was not terminally ill, said the decision had been driven by his deteriorating quality of life.
Mr Goodall had flown from Australia for his assisted suicide, attracting the attention of people around the world.
Shortly before his death, he said he was “happy to end” his life.
“My life has been rather poor for the past year or so and I’m very happy to end it,” he said, surrounded by several family members.
“All the publicity that this has been receiving can only, I think, help the cause of euthanasia for the elderly, which I want.”
The admired scientist who wanted a say in how his life ended
The academic died “peacefully” at 12:30 (10:30 GMT) at the Life Cycle clinic in Basel, from an infusion of Nembutal, a barbiturate, said Philip Nitschke, founder of Exit International, the group which helped him take his own life.
He was visibly frustrated by the process of formal paperwork, and Mr Nitschke later said: “In fact his last words were ‘This is taking an awfully long time!'”
Mr Goodall’s last meal was his favourite – fish and chips and cheesecake – and in his final minutes he was played Ode to Joy from Beethoven’s 9th symphony.