News

Ailing DJ Casey Kasem to stop receiving food, water

Ailing DJ Casey Kasem to stop receiving food, water

A RADIO LEGEND: Kerri Kasem and her brother and sister, the "American Top 40" host's children from his first marriage, chose to transition Kasem back to comfort-oriented, end-of-life care at a Washington state hospital where he has been in hospice care. Photo: Reuters

By Eric Kelsey

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The daughter of ailing 82-year-old deejay Casey Kasem has decided to withhold food, hydration and his usual medication from him following a Los Angeles judge’s decision on Wednesday to let her do so, her spokesman said.

Kerri Kasem and her brother and sister, the “American Top 40″ host’s children from his first marriage, chose to transition Kasem back to comfort-oriented, end-of-life care at a Washington state hospital where he has been in hospice care.

Kasem’s care has been the subject of a legal tussle between Kerri Kasem and Casey Kasem’s current wife, Jean Kasem, who initially won a court order on Monday allowing Kasem food, water and his usual medication. Kasem’s wife has opposed withholding food and water from her husband. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Daniel Murphy determined that giving Kasem food and water would be detrimental to his health, agreeing with the deejay’s physicians and daughter Kerri Kasem, who is in charge of her father’s healthcare.

“Transitioning our father’s treatment to comfort-oriented care was one of the hardest decisions we’ve ever had to make,” Kasem’s children said in a statement.

The statement included part of Kasem’s health directive, which stated that he desired no form of “life-sustaining procedures, including nutrition and hydration.”

Kasem, who also voiced the character Shaggy in the “Scooby-Doo” cartoons, had been on comfort-oriented care, which manages pain and withholds food and water that could be harmful to his health, Kerri Kasem’s attorney Martha Patterson said.

Patterson said food was running a risk of giving Kasem pneumonia while water was flooding his lungs.

Kasem’s court-appointed attorney, Samuel Ingham, supports putting his client back on comfort-oriented care.

Gregory Young, an attorney for Jean Kasem, said they would pursue all legal options and that Kasem was being “starved and cut off from medicine until he dies.” Young also alleges that the healthcare directive presented by Kerri Kasem is out of date.

Kasem – who suffers from Lewy body disease, a form of dementia with symptoms similar to Parkinson’s disease – is also suffering from an infected bedsore, an ulcer on the skin that is often difficult to treat.

(Editing by Will Dunham and Jim Loney)

Recent Headlines

in Local

Recall: Popular Kroger-brand spices are taken off Fred Meyer shelves

Fresh
Kroger spices recalled

If you’ve bought popular Kroger spices such as cinnamon, garlic powder, course ground black pepper or Bac’n Buds, these products may be contaminated with Salmonella

in Local

Foreclosures in Bellingham are down

Fresh
House Real Estate

The CoreLogic National Foreclosure Report shows nearly half a percent drop in Bellingham from last year.

in Local

New waterfront trail opens

Fresh
waterfront

The new waterfront trail is finally open. The trail is a part of the Waterfront District Redevelopment Project to redevelop what used to be a pulp and tissue manufacturing facility.

in Local Sports

Former WSU kicker Andrew Furney cut by Jets

Fresh
wsu cougars washington state univeristy pac 12 football logo

Furney spent last summer with the Jets, and kicked a 51-yard game-winning field goal in New York's preseason opening win over Indianapolis.

in Sports

Angels OF Trout out against Houston with wrist injury

Los Angeles Angels' Mike Trout gets ready for his at-bat during the first inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners on Monday, March 31, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.

The All-Star center fielder was hurt attempting to make a diving catch in the fourth inning on Sunday