.- With time running out for the family of brain-damaged Terri Schiavo, who today enters her 13th day without food and water, a glimmer of hope has emerged. An Atlanta federal appeals court has agreed to consider an emergency petition filed by Schiavo’s parents. Late last night, the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said that it would consider a new hearing to reinsert a feeding tube which was removed by court order on March 18th, but was unclear as to when they would make the decision.
The court allowed Bob and Mary Schindler, Terri’s parents to file the emergency request even though they had originally set a March 26th deadline for doing so.
Although the court turned down the Schindler’s requests twice last week, the one-sentence order issued last night simply stated, “The Appellant's emergency motion for leave to file out of time is granted.”
The Schindlers argued that in denying their previous requests, the appellate court failed to decide if there was enough “clear and convincing” evidence that their daughter would have wanted to die in her current condition, as Terri’s husband Michael Schiavo maintains.
Terri has been in a brain-damaged state since 1990 and in recent years, has received food and water through a feeding tube, which her husband had staged a nearly decade-long battle to remove.
Although Terri’s family is holding on to prayerful hope for their daughter’s life, some wonder if the 41-year old woman could survive even with the feeding tube reinserted, after being starved and dehydrated for so many days.
Terri’s father told reporters that, “She still looks pretty darn good under the circumstances,” but added, “You can see the impact of no food and water for 12 days. Her bodily functions are still working. We still have her.”
The appeals court could announce as soon as today whether they will consider the new hearing and potentially keep Terri Schiavo alive.