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Christy O'Donnell (1968 - 2016)

Getty Images / The Washington Post / Contributor

Christy O'Donnell (1968 - 2016)

Christy O'Donnell, a single mother with lung cancer who campaigned to get a right-to-die law passed in California last year, has died. She was 47.

Her brother Jay Watts posted in Facebook Monday that O'Donnell died Saturday. He told People magazine that her death was peaceful and that she passed away at her Santa Clarita home, north of Los Angeles, with her daughter, Bailey Donorovich, 21, holding her hand. Watts did not discuss details of her death in the posting, but he said health care workers who provided her hospice care "were absolutely wonderful in doing what they could to help make Christy's final days as comfortable as possible given the circumstances."

The former Los Angeles police officer who then became a civil rights attorney testified before state lawmakers and filed a lawsuit in a state court last year so California residents who are terminally ill could legally obtain life-ending drugs from a doctor when they felt the time was right.


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California has signed the End of Life Option Act into law, but it is still not in effect as of this date. The law is expected to take effect later this year.

People magazine was told that her immediate family will hold a private service to celebrate her life, per O'Donnell's request, at a later date.

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