by Steven Ertelt
October 5, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — At a press conference in Washington on Wednesday, the family of Terri Schiavo unveiled a memorial to her life and legacy. The Schindler family made public the creation of a magnificent sculpture, entitled "Compassion" that is a tribute to her life and a reminder to not subject the disabled to the same kind of euthanasia death she endured.
Created by artist Ron Berry, the sculpture represents the compassion Terri Schindler Schiavo received during her last moments.
The sculpture depicts an angel comforting and shielding Terri with one wing and motions heavenward with the other in anticipation of Terri’s death and her going to Heaven.
Four cherubs are perched around the base of the Compassion sculpture and they face away from Terri towards the four corners of the earth, charged with the judgment on humanity for allowing such a travesty to occur, the family said.
"Unfortunately, the laws now err on the side of killing rather than protecting the disabled," Terri’s brother Bobby Schindler said recently.
"That’s what is so frightening," he added. "I think we’ve lost our sense of compassion."
“I can’t even describe how touching and just how moving it was to see something like this being made in honor of my sister," Bobby added in comments to Family News in Focus.
A location for the memorial has not yet been determined, but it is thought that it will eventually be housed at a pro-life center or church.
The memorial is a mote fitting tribute for Terri than the cemetery marker Michael made for her.
Michael buried Terri’s cremated remains in a Florida cemetery rather than in a Philadelphia plot he owns. He upset Terri’s family by putting the quote, "I kept my promise" on Terri’s burial marker.
Schindler told LifeNews.com at the time he believes "the intention of this inscription was to be hurtful, and had absolutely nothing to do with Terri, but only to cause my parents additional pain over the loss of their child."
Michael also listed the date Terri died as February 25, 1990 — the day Terri collapsed from unknown circumstances and entered into an incapacitated state.
The grave marker lists the 1990 date as the day Terri "Departed the Earth" and lists the 2005 date as the day Terri was "at peace." The marker describes Terri as a "beloved wife" and features the Christian symbol of a dove descending to the Earth.
Though Michael was supposed to bury Terri’s remains in Pennsylvania but it took place at Sylvan Abbey Memorial Park in Clearwater, Florida.
Because of the close proximity to where the Schindler family lives, they would have been able to attend the service had Michael notified them, but he failed to inform them of the date and time of the burial ceremony.
Terri Schiavo died on March 31, 2005, after enduring a painful 13-day starvation and dehydration death at the request of her husband, Michael Schiavo. Michael fought a long court battle that ultimately saw Pinellas County Judge George Greer granting his request to take her life.
The cause of the collapse is unknown and the Schindler family believes a heated argument that day may have led to physical abuse causing the collapse.