Clinic expands, provides only late-term abortions in N. Texas
WFAA November 4, 2009
By JASON WHITELY / WFAA-TV
November 4th, 2009
DALLAS – Dr. Curtis Boyd, who opened the first abortion clinic in North Texas 36 years ago, has expanded his practice and now provides a rare more controversial procedure known as a late-term abortion for women up to six months pregnant.
“I’ve been working day and night to get this open,” he said when asked why he saw a need for such a procedure.
Dr. Boyd opened the Fairmount Center, Texas’ first abortion clinic, in 1973.
But, after 36 years, his practice has outgrown the small office at Fairmount Street and Cedar Springs Road near Uptown.
He merged the clinic with Aaron Women’s Health Center and then reopened them both under a new umbrella known as the Southwestern Women’s Surgery Center at Royal Lane and Greenville Avenue last week.
Unlike his other clinic, the new location is a surgery center, which means Boyd and his staff are now able to offer late-term abortions for women in their second trimester up to six months or 24-weeks pregnant.
“For us, since we’ll be serving such a large area, we’ll probably see 2,000 second trimester abortions a year,” he projected.
This is the only place of its kind in North Texas. But, it’s controversial because the fetus in the second trimester is viable.
“Before this opened, they’re flying to Albuquerque,” Boyd said of his patients. “They were flying to Kansas, flying to Colorado, sometimes they went to Atlanta. So, there are women who desperately need and want this service and it wasn’t available.”
“It is not illegal,” conceded Karen Garnett, Catholic Pro-Life Committee. “But, just because something’s legal doesn’t mean it’s right. Slavery was legal and it wasn’t right. Segregation was legal but it wasn’t right. Abortion is legal but it’s not right.”
The Catholic Pro-Life Committee of Dallas relocated sidewalk counselors to the new clinic hoping to prevent women from going inside.
“We feel that if people don’t see the other side then hearts will not be converted,” said Jackie Lee, a sidewalk counselor of seven years. “We’re here to convert hearts.”
Lee and her colleagues said their vigils at Dallas’ five abortion clinics have saved 3,500 pregnancies since 1997.
Boyd said he too has staggering numbers, especially since second trimester abortions. He estimates that since opening the state’s first clinic in 1973, his practice has performed 300,000 abortions.
At 72, Boyd is full of energy, vowing not to stop anytime soon. Those debating what he does vow the same.
At 4:30 p.m. Saturday, the Catholic Pro-Life Committee plans a prayer vigil and memorial outside Boyd’s old facility to remember the pregnancies women aborted.
Preventing two abortions Tuesday, Garnett said the sidewalk counselors have remained successful at the new location.
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DALLAS – Dr. Curtis Boyd is no stranger to controversy. In 1973, Boyd opened the Fairmount Center, which was the first abortion clinic in Texas.
Boyd is the only doctor in North Texas who will perform late-term abortions to women up to six months pregnant.
“We see patients from Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana and across Texas,” he said.
Now, the doctor has made a jarring admission.
“Am I killing?” Boyd said. “Yes, I am. I know that.“
Boyd said he is an ordained Baptist minister who has now turned Unitarian. He said he prays often.
“I’ll ask that the spirit of this pregnancy be returned to God with love and understanding,” he said.
Those prayers are vastly different than the ones that are made by members of the Catholic Pro-Life Committee who gather outside his office in hopes to sway women seeking abortions.
“Well, we’re certainly disappointed to hear any unborn child will be killed by abortion,” said Karen Garnett, with the Catholic Pro-Life Committee. “But, to hear it’s a late-term abortion in Dallas, once again, it’s particularly devastating.”
The doctor opened the Southwestern Women’s Surgery Center last week on Greenville Avenue. By law, Boyd must have a surgery center in order to abort a fetus more than 16 weeks along.
But, opposition to the late-term abortions doesn’t just come from religious groups. Rep. Jeb Hensarling, whose district is where the surgery center resides, told News 8 he is troubled by the facility as well.
Boyd said he too has been troubled, but said his plight comes from the torment that drives patients to seek his services.
“The hardest ones are the young girls,” he said.
Girls as young as nine and ten have come to his clinic, he said.
Death threats have become a norm in Boyd’s life. He was a close friend of Dr. George Tiller, who was a Wichita, Kansas abortion doctor murdered in May.
” I don’t want the fate that befell Dr. Tiller, but I’m not going to be deterred because what I’m doing is important,” he said.
Boyd said he tries to make his phone numbers and address as private as possible and has heavy security.
This Statement is recorded in a National Abortion Federation Document:
Dr. Curtis Boyd, MD, Albuquerque, New Mexico
As a physician it never occurred to me to do an abortion. I didn’t know how. But as I continued to work with the church groups and to refer women out of the U.S. for abortions, those desperate women kept pleading, “But, Doctor, can’t you do something?” At first, the answer was obvious. Of course not. In their desperation, I’m sure that those women had no idea what they
were asking of me. I would risk my medical license, my entire career, my young family’s well being, and my own freedom, if I performed an illegal abortion. Ultimately, I risked all those things which I held dear because I could no longer live with the knowledge that I could do
something and I was choosing not to. Many of the doctors of conscience who have provided abortions though the years were moved to
do so by the horrors of botched illegal abortions. I saw those ill and sometimes dying women in my medical training too. I was moved by their plight. But that was not what drove me to risk my career and sometimes my life. I was moved by the certain knowledge that women’s lives
could be ruined when they could not abort a pregnancy.
Dr. Boyd – perhaps you should be concerned about the “Botched abortions” and “Violence by pro-choicers and abortion doctors still going on today:
– read here