NPR for North Texas
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
ALERT: KERA News 90.1 is performing essential tower maintenance which may disrupt our over-the-air signal between July 12-14. Click here for the KERA News stream, or listen on our app or smart speakers with no disruption. Thanks for your patience!

Husband Says Marlise Muñoz, Removed From Life Support, 'Made Me A Better Man'

Marlise Muñoz, right, was removed from life support on Sunday. Her husband, Erick, is on the left."

Before Marlise Muñoz, the North Texas woman who was brain-dead and pregnant, was taken off life support, her husband says he decided to name what would have been the couple's second child.

Erick Muñoz told The Associated Press on Monday he gave the 23-week-old fetus the name of Nicole, his late wife's middle name. Muñoz would not say why he chose to name the fetus.

Marlise Muñoz was taken off life support Sunday, two months after she fell unconscious at home, likely due to a blood clot.

John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth had refused her family's wishes to unhook her from machines because it said state law required it to protect the fetus' life.

A judge on Friday had ordered her to be taken off life support by Monday.

WFAA-TV interviewed Erick Muñoz in a story that aired Monday. He said he visited his wife every day for 62 days.

He says he has to fight the images in his mind of his wife on life support.

“The way I fight them is I go to the videos and I go to the pictures... I go to the memories,” he told the station.

“She made me a better man, and I thank her for it. I thank her very much,” Erick Muñoz said.

WFAA-TV reported:

He had requested doctors do a final sonogram because he wanted to know the sex of the unborn child. After learning it was a girl, Erick named her "Nicole," Marlise’s middle name. “It's hard," he said. "Part of you wants to yell and scream, but you just have to stay strong for the rest of the family, too, because you know your pain hurts them." … Erick admits he’s seen a lot of negative comments about his decision, and realizes that everyone is entitled to an opinion. But he says something that was always talked about with his wife was quality of life. Erick felt the child would not have a good quality of life if it had gone without oxygen for so many hours. “I'm just glad they are not in my shoes. I hope every day that no one ever has to go through what I went through,” he said. ...

Eric Aasen is KERA’s managing editor. He helps lead the station's news department, including radio and digital reporters, producers and newscasters. He also oversees, the station’s news website, and manages the station's digital news projects. He reports and writes stories for the website and contributes pieces to KERA radio. He's discussed breaking news live on various public radio programs, including The Takeaway, Here & Now and Texas Standard, as well as radio and TV programs in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.