Lura Lynn Ryan Hospitalized - NBC Chicago

Lura Lynn Ryan Hospitalized

Jailed governor's wife may have hours to live, attorneys say



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    "Oh my goodness," former Gov. George Ryan's wife, Lura Lynn, said upon hearing news of Sen. Dick Durbin's plea to President George Bush to commute the governor's sentence. "God bless his heart."

    An attorney for imprisoned former Illinois Gov. George Ryan says his wife, Lura Lynn Ryan, is hospitalized in intensive care, and doctors say she may have only hours to live.

    Ryan attorney, former Gov. James Thompson, said that Ryan's family has been called to Lura Lynn's side.

    "She was taken to the hospital this morning, placed in Intensive Care and she has developed sepsis, which is massive inflammation of the blood system that is sometimes the result of chemotherapy or radiation in treating cancer.  She has multiple cancers and she was undergoing both radiation and chemotherapy despite her age and physical condition in sort of a desperate attempt to see her husband one more time," Thompson told NBC Chicago.

    He says an emergency motion has been filed in federal court to allow George Ryan to be released from prison so he can join his wife of 50 years.

    Thompson said attorneys have also appealed to prison authorities to release Ryan under a program that enables inmates temporary leave to visit gravely ill family members.

    Lura Lynn Ryan was admitted to the hospital Wednesday after apparent complications from chemotherapy. She has been diagnosed with lung cancer as well as cancer in her kidneys, spine, pelvis and liver.

    Ryan is a little more than three years into his 6 1/2 year sentence at a federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind. on racketeering, conspiracy, and other charges.  A judge denied Gov. Ryan's motion last month for early release.