Ibis mourns the loss of Dr. George Tiller

June 2009

June 1, 2009 – Ibis Reproductive Health mourns the unspeakable loss of our colleague and an inspiring figure in our field, Dr. George Tiller, who was murdered while attending church services in his hometown of Wichita, Kansas, the morning of May 31, 2009. Dr. Tiller cared for women and families for over 35 years and was one of a handful of physicians in the country who performed later-term abortions. He was a kind, caring, and generous man and had an unwavering commitment to helping women requesting his services, despite continued harassment, threats, and attempts on his life. 

“Dr. Tiller’s murder is a tragedy and a huge loss for American women. It is also an outrage that the harassment and murder of physicians, nurses, and clinic staff who provide women with high-quality, life-saving, and legal abortion services continue in this country,” said Kelly Blanchard, president of Ibis. 

As the number of abortion providers continues to decline and restrictions on abortion at the state level increase, it is becoming more and more difficult for women to access abortion care in the United States. This particularly affects poor women, women in rural areas and in states with few providers, and women needing services later in pregnancy. Dr. Tiller provided an essential service for women, many of whom traveled hundreds, if not thousands of miles to see him, in addition to providing comprehensive care to women and families in Wichita.

Our thoughts are with Dr. Tiller’s family, friends, and community at this terrible time; he will be greatly missed.