In wake of Chris Gard and Connie Yates’ decision to end the legal battle for the right to treat their son Charlie Gard, please find a statement below from Americans United for Life CEO & President Catherine Glenn Foster, who is currently in the U.K. providing legal counsel and support for Charlie’s parents.

“Charlie Gard’s parents were forced to make a heartbreaking decision today – to end the courageous fight for Charlie’s life. This decision was not made lightly. After over 8 months of exhaustively battling for the right to care for their son, Chris Gard and Connie Yates made a brave choice to do what was best for their little Charlie and end the legal fight to seek cutting-edge treatment. It became clear after new tests performed last week that over the last months without this treatment, Charlie’s muscles had atrophied too far for it to have a chance to be effective. As I sat behind Connie and Chris in the courtroom, I could see the shock and tears in everyone’s eyes, from reporters to the High Court judge presiding over the case. Connie and Chris, along with their family, were openly crying.

However, as Connie said as she spoke to the court and to supporters, we must remember that if Charlie had been allowed to receive treatment back in November 2016, when his parents originally requested it, there would have been a good chance that Charlie could have substantially recovered and lived a full and complete life. Instead, the hospital and the courts denied Charlie and his parents that chance, leaving their hands tied and a gut-wrenching decision to be made today. Over the last week, we have learned that Chris and Connie knew best, after all – Charlie had a chance.

But this is not the end – not for Charlie, and not for those like him. We will continue to fight for the dignity of every human life and for every parent to make life-affirming, evidence-based choices for their children.”

Connie Yates’ full statement on their decision: