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Fort Worth Girl Dies After Court Allows More Time on Life Support: Family Attorney

What to Know

  • Payton's heart stopped beating around 8:30 p.m. Friday.
  • Summons was rushed to Cook Children's Tuesday, Sept. 25 in cardiac arrest.
  • The medical staff was able to restart Summons' heart. But they were unable to resuscitate her breathing.

A 9-year-old Tarrant County girl at the center of a three-week court battle with a hospital to keep her on life support has died hours after an appeals court allowed her parents more time to find a facility to maintain her life support.

The attorney for the family of Payton Summons posted on social media Friday night saying Payton's heart stopped beating around 8:30 p.m.

"Known by everyone as full of determination and fight, she fought until her heart gave out," he posted.

The Texas 2nd Court of Appeals on Friday afternoon had upheld a Monday court order allowing her parents to keep her on life support at Cooks until Monday.

The hospital's doctors had declared the child brain-dead and beyond hope of recovery after her heart went into cardiac arrest for an hour on Sept. 25. They had wanted to remove her from life support on Oct. 1, but her parents obtained a court order blocking the move for a week. After the order expired but before hospital doctors could remove her life support, the parents obtained another week extension after failing to find a facility willing to assume her life support. That extension was to expire at 6 p.m. Monday.

Attorneys for the hospital appealed, saying the extension asked hospital staff to maintain a dead person on ventilation and continue treating a "deceased deteriorating body." The attorneys argued such measures were "medically, ethically and morally repugnant."

A judge declined Wednesday to extend a 14-day temporary restraining order that kept a 9-year-old Grand Prairie girl on life support at Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth.
Copyright AP - Associated Press
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