During the second week of February, 1907, housemaid Nellie Walsh, a 28-year-old Irish immigrant, was brought to National Emergency Hospital in Chicago in grave condition from complications of a criminal abortion.

A curettage was performed to try to save her life, but her condition continued to deteriorate. Tward mid-month, the doctor told Nellie that there was nothing more that could be done for her, and that she was dying. Head nurse Cora Bachino asked Nellie if she'd like a priest to administer last rites. Nellie answered yes, and a priest was brought to her.

After last rites, Nellie made her dying declaration, naming Dr. Adolph Buettner as her abortionist. Less than an hour later, she died