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Mom Asks School Not to Resuscitate Her Terminally Ill Son

Rene Hoover has removed her 14-year-old son Alex from school in Athens, Alabama, after a disagreement over whether to save him if he goes into cardiac arrest.

Alex, has critical aortic stenosis, a heart condition in which blood flow is restricted by the narrowing of the aortic valve. Alex’s condition has started to decline lately, and in an interview with the Associated Press, Hoover said doctors told her the most humane thing to do would be to “let him go” if his heart stopped beating.

Hoover decided to have a legal advance medical directive written for Alex, who has autism, which includes a do-not-resuscitate order. However, Limestone County school board officials said they won’t follow the order because they currently have no policies in place. In the state of Alabama, there is no legislation on following do-not-resuscitate orders for individuals under the age of 19.

It’s about their quality of life,” Hoover told WHNT. “And you have to step in and do what you have to do, outside of what your comfort zone, to protect them.”

Despite meeting with the Limestone County school board, the Hoovers and school officials have yet to come to an agreement. However, Alabama state representative Mac McCutcheon came to the meeting to support Hoover, and he told WHNT he’s hoping that the school system and medical professionals can find a balance with regard to Advanced Directive Laws supporting minors.

“He misses school,” Hoover told the AP. “He misses his teachers, he misses his friends. For him not to be able to go to school and finish out the last days that he has, it breaks my heart.”