The story of how Delores Smith died on October 24, 1979 began on June 2 of 1979, when National Abortion Federation member Atlanta Women's Pavillion rose to new levels of incompetence. On that day, when staff there managed to fatally injure two teenage abortion patients in less than an hour.
stopped breathing in the recovery room. An unregistered
nurse-anesthetist was administering anesthesia to 14-year-old Delores Smith while Dr. Jacob Adams was performing her abortion. The
nurse-anesthetist ran to assist in efforts to revive Angela, leaving
Delores unattended with her anesthesia drip still running.
After staff had resuscitated Angela and loaded her into an ambulance,
they returned their attention to Delores, who had gone into
cardio-respiratory arrest. Adams had accompanied Angela to the Grady
Memorial Hospital, and staff refused to release Dolores to an ambulance
until the physician had returned to discharge her. This resulted in a
30-minute delay, during which the ambulance crew was unable to attend to
Delores or begin transporting her.
Angela lingered for a week in a coma before dying on June 11. Delores
never regained consciousness and eventually was admitted to a nursing
home, where she died of adult respiratory distress syndrome on October
24, shortly after her fifteenth birthday.