One day after he cradled his newborn baby, he slipped into a coma and a few days later, passed away as a doting dad of five children.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on July 17, 2020. It has since been updated.
A newborn girl from Texas became her dying dad's final burst of joy as she rested in his arms for 45 minutes before his frail hands started to drop. He let his tears flow freely in satisfaction and gratitude. While the little girl may not have the shadow of her father in her life, she will definitely be reminded of this moment in which she made one of her creators eternally happy.
This moment of her coming into the world and her father inching away shows the inevitable cycle of life and the photos from this day will forever make her grateful for being able to receive a welcome from him and being his last wish that came true in front of his eyes.
Mark and Diane Aulger were parents of four children before their baby girl Savannah was born on January 18, 2012. Weeks before she was born the family spent their days rejoicing and looking forward to a new beginning, as Mark had just beaten cancer and was at home for Christmas, playing guitar, watching movies with his pregnant wife, and handing out gifts, reports ABC News.
"He would talk to my stomach when I was pregnant," Diane Aulger said of her husband. "He was so excited for her."
But January 3 turned out to be dreadful as Mark had to be admitted to hospital again, unable to breathe. As per ABC News, doctors told him that eight months of chemotherapy had ravaged his lungs and diagnosed him with pulmonary fibrosis. "We thought he could get on steroid treatment and oxygen and live for years," Diane Aulger said.
Soon, they learned that these treatments are not effective. He had one week left to live. "He was awake and alert, himself. I really didn't believe the doctor [at first]," Diane Aulger said. "The next day his doctor came in and said: 'When are you going to have this baby?'"
On January 18, Diane went into induced labor to fulfill the last wish of her dying husband. Their baby girl was brought into the world in the same room his father rested. "The day she was born his oxygen levels were really high," Diane said. "He held her for 45 minutes. Him and I just cried that whole time."
The next day, Mark tried to hold their baby in his arms again, but this time, he just couldn't and lasted for only one minute. "He just couldn't take it," Diane said.
The devoted husband and father of five slipped into a coma soon after. "If she cried, he would shake his head and moan. I put her on him when he was in the coma a few times and his hand would move toward her," Diane said.
On January 23, with his family by his side, Mark Aulger breather his last in his hospital bed.
"The kids go on as if dad is really still here," Diane Aulger said. "Mark was a very funny guy. My kids still tell jokes how they would when he was around. He would have been a wonderful daddy to Savannah."
Representative Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by pixdeluxe