Elderly man cuddling baby

Man Retires And Decides To Spend All Of His Time Cuddling Premature Newborns

A Secret Life of Mom Highlight Story: Sometimes there are stories that are just too memorable, too beautiful, or too touching to keep locked away. That’s why we scour the archives and bring some of them back to experience again. They may make you smile or shed a tear, but they’re always meant to add a little something to your day.

When someone retires, their plans, stereotypically involve traveling, playing golf, or maybe taking on a new hobby. But in 2002, David Deutschman had something else in mind. It was then that he decided to volunteer at his local hospital, and he definitely left a legacy. If one were ask a nurse at the Scottish Rite Hospital in Atlanta who the ‘Baby Whisperer’ is, they would most certainly tell you it was David.

When David retired, he had no idea what to do. In fact, he was simply looking at things that would fill his time. Eventually, he learned about the baby buddy program at Scottish Rite Hospital, which is currently known as the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta – Scottish Rite Hospital.  

What is the baby buddy program? Apparently, this is a service that is quite exclusive to this hospital. They hire people who comfort babies that are either premature or need some special attention. David previously stated, “When I first came to work for the hospital, they gave me a little baby to hold. And the child life person walked by and said, ‘Hey, you hold babies? I’ve got a job for you.’ And I just loved it.”

In the current scenario around the world, baby buddy programs could be a necessity. There are several parents out there who have to work even when their children are in the hospital. As such, it is important for the child to feel needed. And this is what David did, after getting retired. 

Baby Whisperer David Deutchman- The Old Man Who Gave A Major Part Of His Life To Babies

Yet, what was it about this old man that comforted children so much? If one were to get the folklore around the hospital, Deutchman had the ability to calm any infant. So, when the nurses handed him a screaming baby, he would simply cradle it. And in no time, the baby would be calm and snoozing. One could definitely state that babies loved being held by this retiree. Interestingly, being around Deutschman also helped infants forget their fear of injections. While they would still feel it, they would be calm with Deutchman holding them. 

Angie Hawthorne believed, “When he takes a baby into his arms, you can see the baby relax because David’s so relaxed.” Hawthorne served as a clinical nurse expert who was employed by the hospital. Therefore, she knew and observed this retired old man in action quite closely.

And before we forget, we have to credit the hospital for making life fun for David. He definitely got a new lease of life due to this. As a result of this, he had his own message for other retirees. He wanted them to get off their couches, and do something. Anything that would make them happy. For there was a possibility that their happiness could make others happy. 

Read: Teen Praised After His $10K Baby Drop-Off Box Receives Abandoned Newborn

A Calming Presence- The Retired David Deutchman Had The Magic Touch That Calmed The Babies

By 2017, this retiree had already gone ahead and comforted close to 1,200 babies. Needless to say, the parents of these babies were pretty grateful to him. Yet, David always maintained that it was he who benefitted the most. But the most wholesome part of the entire story was him getting viral soon. Although he had been a ray of sunshine in the hospital, people didn’t really know of him.

Soon, his story appeared on YouTube, and his zeal for life attracted others. One user commented, “This guy just added another 10 years to his life. I’m sure. What an angel.” While another user stated, “His presence is so calming. Im 39 but wish he could hold me.” Another user went on to write, “He makes me feel relaxed just by talking. He’s got a very calming, comforting, and safe presence.”

David Deutschman
Image Credits: Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta

The story of this retiree is quite a contradiction to what we believed about old people. While society would have us know that old people only loved to complain, that was not the case. Some of them wanted to help the youth. In fact, they wanted to be a productive unit of society. And what is really commendable was that they wanted this even in their sunset years.

Unfortunately, David Deutschman ‘the Baby Whisperer’ passed away in 2020 from cancer. The retiree gave 18 years of his life to such a noble venture. After his death, the hospital released a statement, “Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta extends its deepest sympathy to the family of David Deutchman. David was a long-time volunteer in the pediatric and neonatal intensive care unit at Scottish Rite for 14 years, providing support to many patients and their families. The Children’s family will never forget this incredible legend and the countless lives he touched.”

Keep Reading: Abandoned Baby Survives After Puppies Cuddle Up To Her And Kept Her Warm


  1. ‘ICU Grandpa’ Who Cuddled and Soothed Sick Babies Dies from Cancer: ‘Incredible Legend’.” People.  Rachel DeSantis. November 17, 2020.