Hospital Staff, Charitable Photographer Help Cancer Patient Be There for the Birth of His Son


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Source: Sara Boccolucci

Source: Sara Boccolucci

The birth of a child is usually the most incredible moment of someone’s life, but it was particularly special for Denver couple Cagney Wenk and his fiancé Jessica Li.

Weeks before Li was scheduled to give birth, Wenk was diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer known as glioblastoma that would require multiple surgeries. He was in the ICU recovering from his third procedure when Li went into labor on September 18.


While that could have easily led to Wenk missing the birth, the staff at Boulder Community Hospital ensured that wouldn’t happen. They arranged for Wenk, his nurse, and all his medical equipment to be rolled into the room where Li gave birth to their son Levon Robbie Wenk.

Local photographer Sara Boccolucci was on hand to document the birth for the young couple. She was donating her time through the organization Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, which coordinates photographers who are willing to donate their time to families whose babies are born still, not expected to live long, or dealing with other medical issues.

Boccolucci, who photo-documented the birth and produced a video for the parents, told Today, “I was honored to provide them this service and offered birth photographer instead of just pictures after the baby was born.”

She added, “The atmosphere in the room was serene and joyful. The hospital staff and their family were amazing and the room was filled with love and support.”

The mother of four also spoke about how taking the photos for Wenk reminded her about the preciousness of life. “For me, it was a reminder that every day we have here is a gift and to try and make the most of it.”

A GiveForward campaign has been established to help the family while Li recovers from the birth and Wenk continues his treatment.


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