top
From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay Feature
Related Categories: California | Drug War
McWilliams' Last Words: No Retreat, No Surrender
by via his wife
Wednesday Jul 20th, 2005 8:40 PM
"I refuse to allow the govt. to control my life. That's what so much
of this has been about - my right to use a medicine that worked for
me."
STEVE MC WILLIAMS' LAST WORDS: NO RETREAT, NO SURRENDER
Barbara MacKenzie writes:

You have both the family and my permission and deep appreciation for
insuring that Steve's last desperate act be heard and that work be
started immediately to see that all patients, in all states with
medical marijuana laws, have the right to use their medical marijuana
as directed by their physicians with no further delay.

Congress can act Now. They have shown their ability to move fast and
hold special sessions for issues and people that they feel are facing
grave danger. The truth about medical cannabis has been deliberately
twisted, distorted and outright lied about.

Patients are dying, incarcerated, families destroyed because of
powerful interests that fear the loss of their profit margin if the
people are able to grow their own medicine and care for themselves.
Steve's health improvement on medical marijuana was only one of
countless thousands. That medical marijuana works is a known fact to
those countless thousands, their families, and health professionals.
The overwhelming majority of people in this country strongly approve
of medical marijuana. The democratic process requires action now. I
am confident that Congress will respond as I will be going there to
tell them of their responsibility to do so.
*
The text of Steve's message will follow a brief background regarding
events that preceded Steve's death.

Over the past year, both of our health conditions declined
significantly. Steve's headaches not only became a daily occurrence,
but increased in severity, dominated by hours of sleep due to the
pharmaceutical medications that only minimized the pain, very rarely
was he free of a headache. The nausea & vomiting became the norm,
yet Steve pushed on.

His doctor worked hard to help, fighting for the right to use Marinol
for pain, despite it's high cost. After the lose of our Marinol for
two months in early 2004, she worked with the chief pharmacist to
educate him about cannabis and Marinol and the Marinol was
restarted. Steve's latest Marinol bill was close to $16,000

By early spring the pain/functioning level of our pre-cannabis days
returned Steve spent much of his time asleep or lying on his side
watching TV. Walking the dogs and working in our flower garden were
his only activities. He continued to go to City Council. His last
visit was on June 28, 2005 to ask the City Council to help implement
the collective aspect of the guidelines and help secure a property
for such. I will continue to push on that front.

Preceding his death, he had been hospitalized, for taking too many
pain pills due to confusion. Neurology and psychiatric consults were
done and appointments were made to address the severe increase in
pain. There was hope of at least some relief. Steve left the
hospital on July 8, 2005. He was weak, but in good spirits and
improved after coming home. He was awake, but ready to go to sleep
when I went to bed on Sunday night. During the night, I checked to
see that he was sleeping, which he was. When I woke in the morning,
I found him and the following note.

The judge he mentions in the letter is the judge who restricted our
medical marijuana, then refused to change that condition of the bond
after the positive December 2003 9th Circuit Raich decision. His
attorney tried all legal avenues.

STEVE MCWILLIAMS LAST WORDS

July 10, 2005

Dear All,

This is my time to say goodbye to you. I came to California and San
Diego to celebrate life and health with the right to use marijuana
for my pain and suffering. But the law that was supposed to protect
patients like me has been turned on it's head so that no patient can
fell safe ever again. Taking the methadone was only supposed to shut
down the pain from the headaches which lately have been very bad. I
wanted to stop the pain but that got out of control too. I didn't
realize what I was taking. I just wanted the pain to go away. But
now, with everything that happened I know I will never be whole again.

I am an advocate and activist for a good cause - my good health. As
an activist I believe in acting when the time is right. To be an
impeccable warrior - I believe that my actions - of not being here-
can help move the discussion of medical marijuana back to what's good
for the patient without the DEA telling us what medications we can
use.

Judge Reuben Brooks is a wretched, evil little gnome who thinks he
can practice medicine and tell me what medications I can take. After
last week I expect to be called to the Federal Courthouse or
somewhere to talk about my use of methadone. I cannot allow the
government to decide what drugs I must take. It's my life. I had
intended to see my Dr. Geanacou who has been the best doctor I've
ever had.

I am gone now. I didn't want to wake and worry Barbara - she has no
idea that I'm gone. This was my last chance to help the medical
marijuana movement and others that I care about. None of this was
ever planned by me - no one knew what I was set out to do. After
last week my mind and body have not been the same. Thinking is much,
much more difficult. I still feel very dizzy and nauseous. I know
that I will not be able to recover to the pain level I was at before.
I have been hurt by last week and that was just an accident. I
believe now though that I will be locked up in some kind of cell.
I refuse to allow the govt. to control my life. That's what so much
of this has been about - my right to use a medicine that worked for
me.

As an activist I've given everything to the cause - all my
possessions, my time and my life. You can't give more than that.

NO Retreat
NO Surrender

Love Steve
LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the latest comments about this post.
These comments are submitted anonymously by website visitors.
TITLE AUTHOR DATE
Get Up Stand Up, Stand Up For Your RIGHTS!Eddie LuganSaturday Jul 8th, 2006 2:46 PM
hi barbara its michellemichelle mc williamsFriday Jun 16th, 2006 12:41 PM
I know pain toonikkiTuesday May 9th, 2006 9:38 AM
County CommisionerJohn C TraughberFriday Mar 3rd, 2006 9:36 PM
RESPONSE TO DESPAIRNANWednesday Dec 7th, 2005 9:02 AM