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Edwarda O'Bara, World's Longest Coma Patient, Dies

Posted Nov 24 2012 10:15am
Edwarda O'Bara, the world's longest coma patient, who had been called the "Sleeping Snow White" during the 42 years she remained comatose, has died at the age of 59.

In 1970, when Edwarda was 16, she suddenly fell ill and slipped into a diabetic coma.  As she lay in her bed, she turned to her mother, and pleaded with her to stay near.  “Promise me you won't leave me,” the teen begged her mother.  The mother promised, "I would never leave you, darling."  ( Daily Mail )

As part of her care, Edwarda’s body was turned every two hours to keep away bedsores.  Edwarda's mother, and later her sister, would also lovingly braid Edwarda’s grey hairs, and suck the mucus from her throat to allow her to breath.  They mixed baby food, milk, eggs, orange juice, Mazola oil, brewer's yeast and a piece of white bread into a blender and then a wire mesh strainer, pouring the concoction into Edwarda's feeding tube every two hours, day and night.  Family and friends would also visit her, playing music and reading to the woman. Dr. Wayne Dyer later wrote a book about the family, A Promise Is A Promise: An Almost Unbelievable Story of a Mother’s Unconditional Love and What It Can Teach Us.  ( O'Bara family website )

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