Another Child Dies Waiting for Access to Medical Marijuana in New York

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Another Child Dies Waiting for Access to Medical Marijuana in New York

By Drug Policy Alliance

Family’s Pleas for Relief for Little Donella Nocera Went Unheeded; Families, Advocates Call Upon Governor Cuomo to Immediately Help Suffering New Yorkers

Donella Nocera.

Donella Nocera.

NIAGRA FALLS, NY — Yesterday, 8 year old Donella Nocera of Niagra Falls passed away while waiting for emergency access to medical marijuana to ease her end-of-life suffering.

Donella was fighting stage 4 brain cancer. Her father, Nate, joined Compassionate Care NY from Donella’s bedside, fighting for emergency access for his daughter and pleading with Governor Cuomo to take action.

Delta Extrax

“More than five months after Governor Cuomo signed a bill into law that was meant to bring vital treatment to our family, my daughter Donella is dead,” said Donella’s father, Nate Nocera, in a statement. “Governor Cuomo, I know you cannot turn back time to get us the medical marijuana that could have slowed the aggressive growth of the tumor in her brain. I know you cannot give us back the days, turned into weeks, turned into months that we lost Donella to a narcotic-induced sleep. But you have the power to end the needless suffering of so many New York families, and I urge you to use it. In the name of my little girl and at least two other children who have died waiting for medical marijuana, I urge you to take action. When you gather with your loved ones this holiday season, I ask that you keep my family in your heart as we suffer the loss of our dearest Donnie.”

“Today the Compassionate Care New York family sends our deepest condolences to the Nocera family for the loss of their little girl, Donella,” added medical marijuana advocates Compassionate Care NY in a statement Friday. We are privileged to have experienced Donella’s fiercely beautiful spirit. We will honor and keep Donella alive in our hearts as we continue to fight for those in dire need of emergency access to medical marijuana. After Governor Cuomo signed the medical marijuana bill into law, he directed the Department of Health to expedite solutions for emergency access. But families are still waiting for relief, and the number of children suffering and dying continues to grow. Governor Cuomo has the power to end the needless suffering of New York patients and families. It is our sincerest hope that Donella’s passing will spur Governor Cuomo to take immediate, unequivocal action to provide emergency access to medical marijuana for those patients who cannot wait for the full system to come online next year. Because no family should suffer through needlessly losing their children, and no parent should have to watch their children suffer when relief is so close at hand.”

Earlier this year, 9 year old Anna Conte, who suffered from Dravet Syndrome, passed away while awaiting for the state’s medical marijuana program to be implemented.


  • corrie macdonald
    December 12, 2014

    The suffering of so many children needs to stop now, Why would anyone allow this to happen to a innocent soul, Each and everyone involved in keeping this medicine from the children will be judged for this one day, Disgraceful

  • scott
    December 13, 2014

    if it was one of his grandkids or own child there would plenty of access to charlottes web and all medical cannabis to ease pain, suffering, shrink terminal cancer tumors and ward off seizures. These kids don’t have time to wait (ANTI-WEEDS SAY WE NEED MORE RESEARCH unfortunetley DEA has total control on how much research is allowed but alls they test for is negative effects.

  • adrienne
    December 13, 2014

    there is somany reasons why people are losing their lives and the law is suppost to keep people from dying but because of all of the law about marijuana.

    Im only 11 and i know this like come on innocent people.

  • Gina Waller
    December 14, 2014

    I have had 2 brain tumors in my lifetime and I am from Colorado ….Luckily we have the Medical here My heart goes out to those states that have not recognized the full benefits and i hope your Legislators get on the ball soon before more parish.

  • Timothy Snith
    December 20, 2014

    This is insane we should be going Ferguson over this shit. Little kids suffering and dying why? So some god fdamned government parasites can get a paycheck one of the days ‘ when we the ones that have endured 40 yearsof this horseshit arebgpinhg too be in control I suggest war crimes trials be held we cpuild keep those CCA prisons full of former idea and task farse wod monkeys

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