Gregory, a critically ill British baby, tragically passed away in the early hours of Monday morning after being taken off life support over the weekend, following a court order in the United Kingdom. The eight-month-old little one died in her mother’s arms at 1:45 a.m. on November 13th, at a hospice, as reported by the British advocacy group Christian Concern.
Gregory’s parents, Dean Gregory and Claire Staniforth, expressed their anger, heartbreak, and shame through Christian Concern. They stated that the NHS (United Kingdom’s National Health Service) and the courts not only stripped their daughter of the opportunity to live longer but also took away her dignity to die in their family home, where she belonged.
The process to remove Gregory’s life support began on November 11th, with the extubation of her respiratory tube and her transfer to a hospice, where the remaining life support measures were withdrawn. This was reported by the Italian pro-life advocacy group “Pro Vita e Famiglia.”
Indi Gregory, born in February and baptized in September, suffered from a rare degenerative mitochondrial disease. She received life-sustaining treatment on a ventilator at Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham, England. After the High Court of England deemed it in the best interest of the child to be taken off life support against her parents’ wishes, the Italian government granted her Italian citizenship on November 6th and agreed to cover the cost of her medical treatment at the Vatican’s pediatric hospital, Bambino Gesù.
Gregory’s parents repeatedly appealed in UK courts to be able to take their baby to Rome for treatment, but they lost their legal battle. The UK’s second-highest court ruled on November 10th that the child’s life support should be withdrawn “immediately.”
The decision on November 10th stated that Italy’s intervention in Gregory’s case was “wholly wrong” and “not in the spirit” of the 1996 Hague Convention, to which both the UK and Italy are parties.
Bambino Gesù, overseen by the Vatican, has offered to treat other critically ill British babies in the past, such as Alfie Evans in 2018 and Charlie Gard in 2017. Both were ultimately denied the opportunity to travel to Italy by UK courts and died days after their life support was withdrawn.
Indi Gregory’s treatment at Bambino Gesù would have been carried out at no cost to UK taxpayers. A statement from the Vatican on November 11th indicated that Pope Francis was praying for Gregory and her family.