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Cops On "Cuddle Watch" Help Premature Baby Go Home

9 News Colorado

There's nothing more devastating than hearing that your newborn baby needs a miracle to survive.

Axel Winch was born 29 weeks premature, and his parents were told by doctors that he's in for a lifetime of medical issues.

"They let us know he had all sorts of issues genetically, physically to the point where the news was pretty devastating,” said Adam Winch, Axel’s dad.

The most devastating part is that doctors are unsure what all these issues are.

Axel was flown from Grand Junction to the Children's Hospital Colorado. The baby boy has gone through many surgeries and procedures, and couldn't leave the hospital for weeks.

“Axel has died in our arms multiple times,” Winch said. “His nurses have saved his life. We have watched miracle after miracle.”

His mom, a Grand Junction police officer, and dad, a former cop who now owns his own business, had to go back home for work. They were devastated that they'd be away from their son.

But then the most heartwarming thing happened to the boy who needed a miracle.

Sgt. Mike Pitrusu, who runs Aurora Police Department’s Employee Support and Wellness unit, could not bear to know that the baby would be alone.

“[I] came up with the idea that we would set up basically a watch, that we would have officers sign up for times to come in here and spend time with Axel.”

It's estimated that 20 officers were part of the "cuddle watch" team to hold Axel during the days his parents were away for work.

Officer Arturo Zepeda cuddles with Axel. 9 News Colorado

Winch and his wife were grateful for their kindness.

“When you look down inside the heart and soul of a police officer, they're there because of love,” Winch said. “They showed the very best side of that here, every day.”

Fortunately, Axel was well enough to return home, and now the officers want to continue to "cuddle watch" other babies.

“We almost need to set up a cuddle watch for Children’s Hospital, just give the opportunity to come in and take care of the little ones,” Pitrusu said.

[Source: 9 News Colorado]

Moojan has been a writer at Shared for a year. When she's not on the lookout for viral content, she's looking at cute animal photos. Reach her at