Monday, June 15, 2009

The Baby Hand by Michael Clancy, 1999

Some of us may be familiar with a picture called “The Baby Hand,” taken on Aug. 19, 1999, by photo journalist Michael Clancy for USA Today, which first published the picture. Clancy was assigned to document a spina bifida operation performed in utero on a 21-week unborn baby named Samuel Armas by Dr. Joseph Bruner, a surgeon at Nashville’s Vanderbuilt University Medical Center.

The picture and its story have been circulated on the internet so often that some question whether they are authentic. They are. Samuel was born on Dec. 2, 1999, weighing 5 pounds 11 ounces–four weeks premature. By all indications, he appeared healthy. Today, he’s a “chattering, brown-eyed 3½-year-old.”

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