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DETROIT (ChurchMilitant.com) - On the day pro-lifers all over the United States are gathering to shut down Planned Parenthood (PP), some in Detroit are commemorating a woman who died as a result of a botched abortion.
On April 28–29, pro-life advocates are gathering for the second National Day of Prayer and Protest — with the intention of shutting down the abortion giant and ending all its federal funding.
The first gathering on February 15 had a large turnout of pro-abortion counter-protesters — outnumbering pro-lifers in some locations by a ratio of 40–1, displaying vulgar signs and shouting insults.
The scene, however, was quieter on Friday at the PP facility on Cass Avenue in downtown Detroit. This time there were no counterprotesters, and pro-lifers had an opportunity to interact with women coming to get abortion-inducing pills — the main business of PP's facility in Detroit.
They carried signs with the image of Cree Erwin-Sheppard to highlight her tragic and unnecessary death early on the morning of July 4, 2016. Three days earlier she underwent an abortion and had an intrauterine device (IUD) inserted. She complained of severe abdominal pain and died in bed at her mother's house.
An autopsy report revealed the abortionist perforated her uterus. Pro-life advocates had attempted for months to get a copy of the report by a Freedom of Information (FOIA) request, but county officials stonewalled for over eights months. After finally releasing the report, key parts referring to Erwin-Sheppard's abortion were redacted.
The cause of death was explained as "complications of intrauterine pregnancy, including pulmonary emboli related to uterine vein thrombosis." The next part, however, was censored, which mentions the cause of death being "uterine perforation status post early vacuum aspiration and intrauterine contraceptive device placement."
Tyler Sheppard, her brother, commented to Church Militant, "It was devastating, and we all felt like it could have been avoided."
He continued, "If she felt overwhelmed and needed somebody to take the baby, more than a few of us would have volunteered. She made the wrong decision, and we lost a loved one because of it."
Both he and other pro-life advocates hold PP partially to blame for what happened to his sister. "I want to take [abortion] off the table; I don't want it to be an option for women," he remarked. Sheppard tells women considering an abortion, "It's not just your life; your baby has a life, too. That's a life inside of you."
He said his whole family feels victimized by PP's actions and that the abortion mill has not cooperated with requests for his sister's medical record. He believes that as a business that pushes abortion, PP won't admit to "murdering, not only children but women as well."
Lynn Mills, a Detroit-area pro-life advocate, an advocate for Erwin-Sheppard's cause, told Church Militant, "Planned Parenthood is responsible for the death of Cree Erwin. Through God's grace we found out about this death; how many go unaccounted for? How many show up at the ERs and get sent home to die?"