WGBH Openvault

FRONTLINE; Death of Nancy Cruzan, The


License Clip

More material is available from this program at the WGBH Archive. If you are a researcher interested in accessing the collection at WGBH, please email archive_requests@wgbh.org.

Undigitized item: Request Digitization

Untranscribed item: Request Transcription

Death of Nancy Cruzan, The
Program Number


Series Description

Premiered January 1983 Since January 1983, FRONTLINE has served as American public television's - PBS - flagship public affairs series. Hailed upon its television broadcast debut as "the last best hope for broadcast documentaries," FRONTLINE's stature over 23 years is reaffirmed each week through incisive documentaries covering the scope and complexity of the human experience. Series release date: 1/1983

Program Description

In the early morning hours of December 26, 1990, 33-year-old Nancy Cruzan died in a Missouri hospital, surrounded by her family who had fought for the right to disconnect the feeding tube that kept Nancy alive. Outside, in the snow and cold, right-to-life protesters prayed for Nancy and claimed that her family was committing murder. To permit the removal of Nancy's life support, the Cruzans waged a three-and-a-half year legal battle that became the first right-to-die case heard by the supreme court. The program chronicles the family's final days with Nancy as they accept the reality of letting their daughter go.



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Public Affairs
Chicago: “FRONTLINE; Death of Nancy Cruzan, The,” 03/24/1992, WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed March 24, 2019, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_21799612807D45318FCA768F75E46CD1.
MLA: “FRONTLINE; Death of Nancy Cruzan, The.” 03/24/1992. WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. March 24, 2019. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_21799612807D45318FCA768F75E46CD1>.
APA: FRONTLINE; Death of Nancy Cruzan, The. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_21799612807D45318FCA768F75E46CD1
If you have more information about this item, we want to know! Please contact us, including the URL.