Two years ago today, Dr. George Tiller, one of only three practitioners providing late term abortions in the US, was viciously gunned down in church in front of his wife and other parishioners who tried to stop the shooter. He was an incredible man, who never intended to carry on his father’s practice after his parents, brother, and sister-in-law were killed in an aircraft accident. But when he moved home to Wichita to take care of his one year-old nephew, he found that his father had left behind a community of desperate women who needed services free of judgment. After one of these women died from a botched illegal abortion, Tiller took over his father’s clinic in 1970, and ran it for 39 years (in which time he was fire-bombed in 1986, and shot in his car 5 times in 1993).
In this article, various patients remember Dr. Tiller and how he affected their lives. I truly defy anyone, anti-choice or not, to read these stories and still be incapable of feeling any empathy for Dr. Tiller or his patients.