The following excerpt is from the op-ed, “Terminal cancer made my son suffer. I urge state lawmakers to pass death with dignity legislation,” by Nilsa Centeno that first appeared in the Chicago Tribune on June 11, 2021.

My 35-year-old son, Miguel Carrasquillo, was an old soul with a contagious smile who stood out in his ability to advocate for change, even though he was dying in agony from cancer.

Miguel was a chef at Petterino’s in Chicago, where he lived for 10 years, when was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumor called glioblastoma multiforme. Despite bravely enduring excruciatingly painful treatments to try to cure his cancer, it spread to his liver, stomach, testicles and other vital organs.

Miguel was only 35 years old when the brain tumor took his life on June 5, 2016.

Five years have passed since the death of my only son. And even though pain of his loss devours me daily, not a single day passes without me continuing to carry out his last wish: to urge legislators to pass laws to give terminally ill people the option he did not have of medical aid in dying to peacefully end unbearable suffering.

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