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Carrie Snyder, Published November 29 2010

Portraits: Evelyn Weninger

Wednesday is the happiest day of the week for Evelyn Weninger. The retired 76-year-old Fargo woman spends two to three hours on Wednesdays rocking babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Sanford Health. “I knew I wanted to do some volunteer work and I love babies,” Weninger said. “The parents can’t be here all the time. If I can fill that little need of nurturing, it makes my day.” Weninger considers herself blessed to be able to spend time in the NICU and enjoys watching the staff work. “It’s an exciting experience and a terrific unit,” she said. As a grandma, Weninger has found rocking the babies fills the void between visits from her own grandchildren. She calls a half hour before her volunteer shift to make sure there is a need for someone to rock the babies. “Most of the time I come,” she said. “If I call in and I don’t come, I pout a little bit.”