David 'the NICU Grandpa' Deutchman #AtoZChallenge

Despite 'doing it' for 12 years, David Deutchman's selfless gesture of love gained prominence only recently. Ironically, for a man well past his seventies, this story begins in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

With her baby born prematurely at 25 weeks, a young mother was struggling between watching her child anxiously inside the hospital for weeks and coming home every night to look after her elder child. Every morning, she worried about how her newborn must feel, alone at night inside the hospital ICU. Until one morning she walked into the PICU and found her tiny infant snuggling happily in the arms of an elderly man. The picture she shared and the story she had to tell would bring the 'NICU Grandpa' into the spotlight.

“He rocked our baby for countless hours. 
What a wonderful gift he has, and what a blessing it is that he shares that love with others.” 
- Kristin Cook Walker.

For 12 years, like clockwork, David Deutchman visits the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta hospital twice - on Tuesdays, he heads to the PICU and on Thursdays to the NICU. He has only one goal. This hospital volunteer sits, cuddles, sings and whispers words of encouragement to the tiniest and weakest of newborn children in the ICU of the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, children whose parents cannot be with them throughout the day. He sits patiently inside the ICU for hours, rocking the babies throughout the day and meets the parents to allays their fears, letting them know that 'the ICU Grandpa' will be there throughout the day for their child.



For 12 years, David Deutchman visits the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta hospital twice a week, heading to the Paediatric ICU every single time. This hospital volunteer sits, cuddles and whispers words of encouragement to the tiniest and weakest of newborn children in the ICU. He sits patiently inside the ICU for hours, rocking the babies throughout the day and meets the parents to allays their fears, letting them know that he will be there for their child.


The photo of David Deutchman shared by the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta presently has an astonishing 248,000 likes, 66,200 shares and more than 10,000 comments.

One comment though stands apart even here, with over 21,000 likes.

"I've known David as a special man for 53 years -- he's my dad! To read the thousands of comments and see the outpouring of affection is very moving to our entire family. Thank you for recognizing my dad. He truly loves what he does." 
- Susan Lilly.





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Author's note:

This is part of my #AtoZChallenge where I will be focusing on Real Life Heroes of Kindness and Compassion.
The list for this year's (2018) Heroes of Kindness can be found here.
Of course, I have been tracking these lovely human beings for years now and have found children as young as six years old and old women in their eighties from across the world who will restore your faith in humanity. You can find the entire list of Real-life Heroes of Kindness and Compassion here.


24 Comments

  1. Oh my this is incredible; what a gift he has to give to the world! Roshan where did you unearth this tory from? I marvel at your sourcing of these tales of kindness!
    The Dalai Lama's Cat by David Miche #atozchallenge

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  2. First a big congrats for selecting such an inspiring and unique theme, it is really a great idea to share about the "heros of kindness", they are the real heros of our society and it would be really inspiring to read their stories. nice post, had a great time while reading it. please read my post herehttps://surbhiprapannablogs.blogspot.com/2018/04/blogchattera2z-homoeopathya2z-d.html

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  3. What an incredible soul. This reminds me of a personal experience... was travelling years back with my tiny little baby on a long flight. She was around 3 months old, and for some odd reason got extremely cranky. Seeing me perturbed, this young gentleman( seated at the far end of the flight) walked up to me, picked up the baby and began walking with her on the flight. Singing a little lullaby, within minutes in his broad arms, she fell asleep. I could not have thanked him enough. The fact was, not a single soul on the flight bothered to help me out, and here was a man seated far away, who decided to help out.

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  4. Wow, this is so sweet it makes me smile! Where you digging up these golden nuggets from? Happy to know that you're sharing their stories!

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  5. Your series has the capability to bring back the faith in humanity that one has lost. Well done, Doc :)

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  7. i am always in awe of doctors. this post adds more respect. Such people like David do exist still, restoring the faith in humanity. touching story. should you be interested in reading about women themed at 40, do have your say on my posts as well. D is for Dare to Dream. this year's AtoZ posts, i am writing about the women@40 on my perspective. have a nice day

    https://syncwithdeep.wordpress.com/2018/04/04/d-dare-to-dream-blogchattera2z-atozchallenge-atoz/

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  8. Can't stop the waterworks. Thank you.

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  9. I saw his video..I guess there is another person like him who adopts terminally ill children. Nice series Doc.
    https://trinalooksback.com/2018/04/04/desai-uncle-the-silent-man/

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  10. Who would've thought!! Well david did! And thank you Doc for sharing it with us!

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  11. What a kind way to help and support families, caregivers and children too. And that too at his age. Simply awe-inspiring!!
    5 Reasons to Keep a Travel Diary #AtoZChallenge

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  12. This is so incredible! Such a small gesture really but it means the world to a new parent. It's amazing how someone we don't even know can make such a profound impact on our life. Wishing him many more healthy years of being NICU Grandpa

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  13. This is so sweet. How many people do that? A very touching gesture by David.

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  14. I teared up reading this. What an incredible thing to do!

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  15. I repeat that my heart swells at the kindness that exists in the world and the one that you are helping bring to limelight. Another one of your gems well received.

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  16. Wow! This really restores your faith in humanity! Wonderful Doc!

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  17. This brought a tear to my eye. Such genuine love and concern should be applauded.

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  18. He is an angel. How could somebody do such kind act for as long as 12 years? Incredible. And, wow, you could bring these wonderful souls to us, that is incredible too.

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  19. David has a heart of gold. People like David are rare to find who give self-less love and warmth. I can't even imagine how blessed those parents and babies were who have experienced David's warmth and kind gesture.

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  20. Wow, ICU grandpa, this is so beautiful that a fatherly figure sits there in NICU for weak babies to rock and love them.

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  21. Thanks for sharing about such inspiring people. They make my faith in good keep alive. Hats off to him.

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  22. David Deutchman visiting pediatrics department in Atlanta hospital for past 12 years, he cuddles and showers love on the weakest of children born there. Incredible compilation of unique story from Roshan.

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  23. This is beautiful! Wonder if we have similar volunteering options in india?

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  24. Roshan, how do you search such kind people? You make them live on your post as if you have personally met them.
    This grandpa is god gifted for the all the lovely forms of God on earth.

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So what do you think ?