Nobody can fail to be moved by Richard’s story. Using the last few months of his life to campaign for greater choice at the end of life is a testament to the person he was and all the people he positively affected.

Richard understood that life is about choice. We all make choices about how we live.We do not, however, have as much choice about how we die.

It is all too easy to think of death as something that happens to other people and there is a tendency to assume that we will die peacefully in our sleep or surrounded by friends and family. While many people do experience a good death, there are many others who suffer unbearably.

READ MORE: Retired GP reveals he is willing to assist in suicide 

Terminal illnesses can cause great pain - both physical and emotional - over a long period of time and, while Scottish palliative care is world-leading, many people find that end of life care cannot alleviate all of their suffering.

A recent report published by assisted dying campaign group, Dignity in Dying, revealed that in Scotland, even if the highest level of palliative care was universally accessible, 11 Scots per week would die a bad death.

Palliative care is excellent, but we must be realistic about its limitations.

The same holds for degenerative conditions such as Motor Neurone Disease, the challenges of which Richard Selley presented so eloquently.

As sufferers’ bodies begin to shut down they lose much of the freedom and independence that they once enjoyed and can often suffer great indignity.

This is one of the most challenging things a person can go through — to be slowly and surely deprived of doing the things that once made life worth living.

While there is no specific law against assisted dying in Scotland, anyone who financially or logistically aids a loved one who chooses an assisted death may be prosecuted for culpable homicide.

READ MORE: Terminally ill Scots have backed a fresh campaign to legalise assisted dying 

Recent changes to assisted dying laws in Canada, the US and Australia mean that over 100 million people worldwide now have access to an assisted death, and Scotland, a forward-facing and liberal country, is lagging behind.

Friends at the End believes that people with terminal conditions or who are incurably suffering should have the right to choose an assisted death.

It is deeply unfair that people who are already experiencing great pain are forced to suffer due to outdated laws.

When the proper safeguards are in place, assisted dying is safe, sensible and compassionate and a change in the law would give people who suffer the most the chance to choose a good death.

Sadly, like an increasing number of Scots, it is too late for Richard and his loving and devoted family.

Assisted dying is the next great liberal reform and the time to change the law is now.

Amanda Ward is chief executive of Friends at the End