The sweet reason this family had a newborn photoshoot for 21-year-old son

Wrapped up like a newborn babe, 21-year-old Clayton gets the newborn shoot with both his parents that he never had.
Wrapped up like a newborn babe, 21-year-old Clayton gets the newborn shoot with both his parents that he never had. Photo: Chaotic Perfection Photography

Newborn photos provide the sweetest memories of a time so fleeting, that most of us can't ever remember them being that small.

Of course not every parent on the planet gets this privilege and so it was for Rebecca Hayes and David Ward, and their son Clayton. Having known each other since they were five, the couple were dating in high school in 1995 when Rebecca fell pregnant and they split before their baby son Clayton was born. Rebecca ended up moving away from their hometown and they each went on to marry and have babies with other people.

In 2013 Rebecca moved back to her hometown after the death of her husband Paul. She wanted to be closer to her own family and for Clayton to be near his father. David and his wife Courtney rallied around the bereaved family, giving support and care when it was most needed. Then tragedy struck again when David's wife died of cervical cancer in 2015.

Rebecca related their story in a moving Facebook post, saying, "When I lost Paul, [David] and his wife stepped up to make sure we were ok. Then a few years later, he lost his own sweet wife and I just wanted him to know he had a friend who understood."

They turned to each other, united in their grief and the pair grew closer, falling in love again.

She wrote, "We had texts and phone calls and long talks over coffee about the crazy thoughts you have and the ridiculous things people say to you and what it feels like to be in this horrible club of the widowed. One day we just got punched in the stomach with it... that love had changed once again and it was the real deal."

With so many milestones missed, the couple decided to have the newborn shoot they never got to have. Teaming up with photographer Duffi Finnegan Crowson, they brought their newborn shoot dreams to fruition with their 21-year-old son. The stinky feet photo is absolutely priceless.


Rebecca introduced the snaps on Facebook saying, "We miss and love our spouses still and will always love them. So this...this is scary and wonderful and crazy... but real. 

How else can you express that love? Why, with the newborn photo shoot you never got to have of course!


Clayton Denes

Born 12/12/1995

240lbs 4oz 75 inches long

Proud parents Becca and David"

It's a bittersweet story of love, loss and reconnection and a beautiful, funny way to commemorate an irreplaceable moment.