Paralympian Marieke Vervoort ‘Considering Euthanasia’ After Rio 2016

Wheelchair sprinter Marieke from Belgium has an incurable degenerative spinal disease that leaves her in chronic pain.

Paralympian Marieke Vervoort 'Considering Euthanasia' After Rio 2016

by Jess Commons |
Published on

Marieke Vervoort emerged from London 2012 an absolute champion. She won the silver medal in the T52 200m wheelchair race and won the gold medal in the T52 100m wheelchair race. Basically, she's amazing.

Now back on the scene again at Rio 2016, the paralympian champion has spoken about the next chapter of her life and admitted she's considering euthanasia after the games are over.

Marieke suffers from from a degenerative spinal disease that's left her paralysed in her legs and with chronic pain. She fits regularly.

Just last month, Marieke, who is 37, spoke to Belgian newspaper L'Avenir about her plans post Rio. 'I will finish my career after Rio. After that, we'll see what life brings and I'll try to make the best of it. I'm starting to think about euthanasia.'

Marieke also told 'Every day it hurts, some nights I do not sleep, and after 10 minutes' sleep I have to train. I hope to finish my career on the podium in Rio.'

Euthanasia in Belgium is legal and has been since 2002. Approximately 1,400 people a year, including terminally ill children, choose to die each year.

'Everybody sees me laughing and happy and gold medals, Marieke said in a translation of the L'Avenir interview done by The Independent. 'They don’t see the other part of me. I can have lots and lots of pain. I sleep sometimes only 10 minutes. But I still get the gold medal.'

'My funeral,' She continued, 'It’s not going to be in a church. It’s not going to be with some coffee and some cake. But I want everybody to have a glass of champagne and to say, "Cheers, Marieke. All the best. You had a good life. Now you are in a better place."'


Marieke is due to race on Saturday in the Women's 400m, T51/52 final. GO MARIEKE.

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Follow Jess on Twitter @Jess_Commons

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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