Friday, November 20, 2009

900-Pound Man Dies after Cut from Chair

I've heard someone say that fat jokes are still the last bastion of sanctioned jokes that people make mocking others. I would have to agree. While jokes of a racist or sexist bend are rejected outright, fat jokes are still considered "safe territory." I would also agree that when you are Obese people judge you unfairly and yes there are people who gawk at people who are fat.

Still I understand why people are very interested when they hear about someone who weighs 900 pounds. Many of us try to wrap our head around this concept that someone could actually become so morbidly obese.

We ask ourselves and others questions about how they will be buried? How did they get him out of his trailer? Why didn't he just put down the Twinkies some would say instead of asking the question that they might want to ask which is "what is his personal accountability in his situation." I don't think these questions are fair or compassionate.

Daniel Webb, 33, died after being taken from his home on County Farm Road Wednesday. Webb had been in a medical chair for nine months, covered in sores and human waste.

Authorities say Webb died from cardiac arrest on his second anniversary. His wife, who met him on MySpace, took care of him over these past months when he became confined to the chair.

He weighed around 900 pounds and had to be cut out his chair in home. Authorities say he was stuck to a chair for nine months.

Webb hadn’t left his house, or even walked for almost nine months. His wife Ada Webb says he hurt his knee and could no longer walk. He sat in a Lazy-boy for the rest of his life. "If he would have had the proper care we tried to get for him back in March this would have never happened," his wife said during an interview Thursday afternoon.

Ada Webb says she and her husband tried to get disability and insurance but could not and she says she didn’t know where else to turn. "I only hope something good comes out of this because it was so unnecessary," Webb said. They say he went into cardiac arrest but I say he died of a broken heart."

Emergency Medical Services Personnel says morbid obesity has become a real issue, and now they carry special tools onboard.

Daniel Webb helped found the True Christian Fellowship in Westminster and was still an associate pastor.

Some point to this case as one that brings attention to the need for universal health care. Others ask about personal responsibility, could he have changed his diet? What part did his wife play as an enabler? Whatever your belief you should be aware that obesity is historically linked to about one third of the increase in domestic health spending since the mid-1980s and is a key factor in the rise in private insurance premiums, Medicare and Medicaid spending.

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