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Euthanasia story highlights sharp social divide

Family watched toddler die for 9 days after feeding tube removed

The story of a Texas grandfather who wants to legalize euthanasia after watching his 21-month-old granddaughter die has garnered hundreds of comments and a lot of empathy.

Natty Newton had a terminal, incurable condition.

A hospital ethics committee decided the humane way to end her suffering was by removing her feeding tube, essentially allowing her to die slowly over a period of nine days by withholding hydration and nutrition.

Much of the controversy stems from the way this baby died.

"I wish the term 'euthanasia' wasn't such an ugly term, but it's what needs to be said. The suffering of this beautiful girl was prolonged nine days longer than necessary and that is just cruel and inhumane. Doesn't that defeat the purpose in the first place," wrote Kevin Massie on KSAT.com.

There were hundreds of viewers who weighed in on Facebook.

Tina Upchurch wrote, "We do it to animals (that are) suffering, why not give humans the same right?"

Another comment on legalizing euthanasia was from Jamie Weed-Hassel, who wrote, "I believe in miracles and I believe in putting things in God's hands. If we allow euthanasia to become legal, it will be used in all kinds of unnecessary situations."

Viewers may have been divided on the issue, but overwhelmingly expressed compassion for baby Natty and her family.      

To see an extended interview with Newton, click here.

To weigh in yourself, click here.

For a list of recent stories April Molina has done, click here.

Click here to view more videos on KSAT.com.