Brittany Lauren Maynard
Brittany Lauren Maynard was born on Nov 19, 1984 in Anaheim, California. She forged a brief but solid twenty-nine years of generosity, compassion, education, travel and humor on this beautiful planet. When faced with a terminal diagnosis with a large and diffuse glioblastoma brain tumor, Brittany chose to live the remaining days in her life fully, keeping active and busy with travel and speaking and writing for the rights of terminally ill patients. Brittany graduated from the University of California at Berkeley, California and then went on to attain a Masters in Education at the University of California in Irvine, California. As an educator who believed in accountability and relevancy of curriculum, Brittany became disillusioned by the appalling state of California’s public education system.
Ms. Maynard traveled the world. On these journeys she volunteered in different capacities. In Nepal, she volunteered in orphanages and classrooms in Kathmandu. She traveled to Viet Nam, Cambodia, Laos, Singapore and Thailand. She worked on a woman-owned farm for one summer in Costa Rica. Brittany went on safari in Tanzania, photographing the wild life. She trained to climb and summited Klimanjaro. Then upping the ante, she ice climbed on volcanoes in Ecuador. As a licensed scuba diver she enjoyed the marine environments in the Galapagos, Zanzibar and the Cayman Islands.
Brittany was the proud owner of two fur babies, Bella (a rescue beagle) and Charley ( a spoiled Great Dane). She also spent time as a volunteer at Tri-Valley Animal Rescue.
After a great deal of thought and research, Brittany chose to move to Oregon. She took legal domicile in Portland in order to avail herself of the Death with Dignity Law. Because the move to Oregon was traumatic and difficult, as a terminal brain tumor patient Brittany advocated for all terminally ill patients to have the same rights that Oregonians are offered. She fervently believed that it is our human right to die with a physician’s aide when diagnosed with less than 6 months to live. Brittany died peacefully on Nov 1, 2014 in her own bed, in her little yellow house in Portland, surrounded by those who loved her.
Brittany’s candid advocacy brought about change in California, the state she was born and raised in. As of June 9, 2016 terminally ill Californians no longer need to leave their home in order to seek their basic human right to have autonomy over end of life health care.