A man affectionately known as “ICU Grandpa” became internet famous this week after Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta posted a picture of him on its Facebook page Wednesday evening.
The post recounted the tale of a mom who arrived to the hospital, worried that her son would be missing her, to find him being held in a man’s arms. The mom “fought back happy tears” and took his photo, CHOA said.
David Deutchman visits the hospital’s pediatric and neonatal intensive care units to hold babies whose parents can’t be with them that day, and has done so for a dozen years, according to CHOA.
The Facebook post had been liked more than 153,000 times and shared more than 44,000 by Friday afternoon.
Multiple news outlets wrote about Deutchman, and CHOA followed up by posting a video Friday. The grandpa can be heard softly singing “You are My Sunshine” to a baby.
“Sometimes I get puked on, I get peed on. It’s great,” he says in the video.
Deutchman says his guy friends ask why he’d do that.
“They just don’t get it, the kind of reward you can get from holding a baby like this.”
Deutchman began volunteering after he retired from working in international business marketing. He has two daughters and two grandchildren, ages 19 and 21, CHOA said.
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