Florida Patient Dies, Spends 42 Years in a Diabetic Coma

Edwarda O'Bara was only 16 when she fell ill, and spent most of her life comatose

By on November 24th, 2012 09:41 GMT

Edwarda O'Bara from Miami, Florida passed away at 59, following the longest time reported for a patient to be comatose. She spent 42 years in a diabetic coma, until finally taking her last breath on Wednesday, November 21.

She was looked after by her mother for the majority of this period, at her home in Miami Garden, NY Daily News writes. She was fed through a tube by her dedicated mother, who changed her and turned her over every two hours, to avoid her daughter getting bedsores.

Kaye O'Bara passed away in 2008 by her daughter' side. Until the age of 80, she would sleep for 90 minutes at a time, to be there for her.

According to the Daily Mail, Edwarda slipped into a coma at just 16 years old, in 1970. Her last words were “promise ... you won't leave me.”

Her touching and inspiring tale was chronicled in “A Promise Is a Promise: An Almost Unbelievable Story of a Mother’s Unconditional Love and What It Can Teach Us,” by Dr. Wayne Dyer.

On January 3, 1970, she took her insulin and suddenly fell ill. The family described she “woke up shaking and in great pain because the oral form of insulin she had been taking wasn't reaching her blood stream.”

Throughout the years she was in a coma, her mother and sister would read to her, and play music.

“She is still making different sounds and is so much more aware of her surroundings. [...] When I am talking to her I have her total attention, I can tell by the look in her eyes. This just really makes me smile,” her sister Colleen O’Bara, who became the woman's caregiver following their mother's death, posted recently.

A few days before her passing, she had been experiencing trouble with keeping food down. She was gone in a split second, while Colleen was in the kitchen, making coffee.

“It is with great sadness I inform everyone my sister Edwarda is now with the Lord in Heaven,” she announced on Wednesday.

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