An Ohio father asked the online community on Reddit to help him remember his newborn daughter without the tubes she was dependent on for the six weeks they spent together.
And the outpouring of support from strangers who submitted beautiful photos has surprised and touched the father, Nathen Steffel.
“I never expected to get the response I did from Reddit,” Steffel told ABC News. “This story just goes to show how awesome people can be.”
Sophia, Steffel’s daughter, had a hepatic hemangioma in her liver. Born at 34 weeks on May 30, her condition was extremely unstable.
“It was an emotional rollercoaster but it was the best 6 weeks of our life,” Steffel said.
Sophia died on July 10 due to pressure on her organs from the liver mass.
“Me and my wife were fortunate to spend so much time with her as some parents do not even get the chance,” Steffel said.
Never being able to get a picture of his daughter without tubes in her mouth, Steffel posted this request to Reddit:
“”'Photoshop Request: My daughter recently passed away after a long battle in the children's hospital. Since she was in the hospital her whole life we never were able to get a photo without all her tubes. Can someone remove the tubes from this photo?'
The support from strangers was immense.
“I’m overwhelmed with joy that this story could touch so many people,” said Steffel. Take a look at some of the submissions.