Dan Diaz, Brittany Maynard’s surviving husband, has opened up about the loss of his Death with Dignity activist wife and how he plans to keep her memory alive.

Dan Diaz On Brittany Maynard

Diaz was by Maynard’s side when she died on Nov. 1, the date she’d chosen to end her suffering and go in peace. Since then, “She was surrounded by the people she loved, and her passing was peaceful,” Diaz told People of the somber occasion, declining to offer further details. “That’s a sacred part of things for me, and I don’t want to share that with the world.”

Since Maynard’s passing, Diaz, 43, misses her every day and finds comfort in the dogs that they had been raising together.  “I have good days and bad days,” Diaz said. “But the feeling of loss is always there – particularly in the morning when I first wake up. And at night, when the house is quiet and I’m just there with the dogs. I think about her every day.”

“Having them there is comforting,” he added, speaking of the dogs. “It gives me other living beings in the house with me so it’s not as lonely.”

Maynard’s decision to end her life before her terminal brain cancer completely ran its course, sparked a debate about one’s right to die. Leading up to Nov. 1, Maynard had released videos that had some believing that she didn’t seem ill enough, and that perhaps she’d made her decision prematurely. Diaz, who was with Maynard in the days leading up to the date, says that she was indeed sicker than she seemed and knew it was her time.

“After a seizure she’d be unable to speak for a while and when she did, it was just gibberish. So when we got up there was a little bit of that. She wanted to go and take a hike so we all went and hiked,” Diaz explained. “There were eight of us total and the dogs. We went on a trail that she liked and it was a good morning. Then we got back to the house.”

“Brittany’s symptoms were bad and they were getting worse. She did what was right for her and avoided needless suffering and a tortuous death,” Diaz said, adding, “She just knew it was time.”

Following Maynard’s death, Diaz is picking up the torch in her fight to pass a Death with Dignity Act in California like the one his late wife was able to take advantage of in Oregon. “My preference would be not to be in front of any cameras, but this was one thing Brittany had asked, that we make this a reality in California,” Diaz explained. “I want to keep my promise to her.”


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