Dad Fighting Cancer Photographed At Son's Birth

Nurses Surprise Dad-To-Be Recovering From Cancer Surgery With A Trip To The Delivery Room

Cagney Wenk photographed attending son’s birth while receiving cancer treatment at same hospital

Cagney Wenk was diagnosed with an aggressive, stage four cancer just three weeks before his fiancé was due to give birth to their son. He ended up in the same hospital she would be delivering their baby in — undergoing brain surgery.

On September 18th, Jessia Li delivered their baby boy, Levon. Nurses decided they wanted to do something special for the family, so they wheeled a recovering Wenk up to the delivery room. As his fiancé was giving birth, Cagney watched nearby with his own nurse and medical equipment. Thanks to some phenomenal nurses and a caring photographer, Levon’s birth was documented in beautiful photos the family will have forever.

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Image via Sarah Boccolucci

Cagney had already had three brain surgeries by the time Jessica went into labor. His ICU nurses at Boulder Community Hospital, knowing his unique situation, decided to do something extraordinary for him and his family. They contacted Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, an organization that usually provides photographs for families who have suffered infant loss. Photographer Sarah Boccolucci offered her services for free and asked if she could photograph not just Cagney with his new baby, but the entire birth. The family agreed.


Image via Sarah Boccolucci


The results were magical.


Image via Sarah Boccolucci


Image via Sarah Boccolucci


“It was incredible,” Boccolucci tells Scary Mommy. “They are an amazing family.”


Image via Sarah Boccolucci

Boccolucci made a slideshow of the photos and posted it to her Facebook page, where it went viral. She hopes that people will see the photos and be inspired to give to the family’s Give Forward fundraising campaign, where they asking for donations to help pay for medical costs and for the care of their new baby now that Cagney is unable to work.


Image via Sarah Boccolucci


Image via Sarah Boccolucci



“There is a point during the birth where Cagney tells Jessica that they are surrounded by all the love in the world right now,” Boccolucci told Huffington Post. We hope that that love continues to surround them as Cagney continues to fight his cancer.

Levon’s Birth Story from SarahBoccolucciPhotography on Vimeo.