On Nov, 12, 2017, the Holmdel family of Vienna Savino, began the unbearable journey that is every parent’s worst nightmare. Their healthy, sweet Vienna, was 2 years old when she fell asleep while watching television at their home in Holmdel, NJ. Vienna never woke up.
After a thorough investigation, including an autopsy, death scene investigation, medical record review, and genetic studies, no cause of death was found. Her death was categorized as SUDC- Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood.
Vienna's parents, Denise and Mike are both physicians, and had never heard of SUDC until after their daughter Vienna died. With Vienna's family’s 501c3 nonprofit Team Vienna 4 SUDC Awareness, Inc., the family wants to change the lack of awareness and education about SUDC. Vienna's mommy Denise Wunderler comments, "We want to change that, so other families may be spared a devastating tragedy such as ours."
SUDC is a category of death in kids 1-18 years old, whose death is still unexplained after a thorough investigation.
Denise adds, "For 2 months after her death, words to my daughter swirled in my head like a hurricane until I wrote them down. My mind quieted." Denise wrote the words and put them away and then about two months later she texted the words to her daughter Vienna’s favorite musician, a NJ entertainer named Ray Andersen, known to kids as Mr. Ray.
Wunderler comments, "Unbeknownst to me, Mr. Ray created the music to go along with my message to my daughter Vienna, and published and performed the very special and touching song." The song is the first one of 11 that Mr. Ray compiled on one CD. The other 10 songs, favorites of Vienna's, are part of Mr. Ray's repertoire and were dedicated on the CD to Vienna. " From the time the song was created in April 2018, I was inspired to take guitar lessons to learn to play the song. It is a tune that has helped me and my family, and so many other families who are trying to survive each day after losing a child. I will forever be grateful to Ray for giving this amazing gift of song to us." said Wunderler.
Listen to I think About You (Song for Vienna):
To draw more interest, for the first time publicly, Denise performed the first verse of “I Think About You (Song for Vienna)”, at the beginning of her recent TED-style talk entitled: Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood (SUDC): My Personal Story of Loss, at the OMED Physicians Conference in Baltimore, MD, on Oct. 27, 2019.
Watch and listen to Dr. Denise Wunderler play the guitar and sing the first verse of her daughter's song, right before her TED-style talk in Baltimore, also seen below:
Please visit TeamViennaSUDC.org to learn more about Vienna, SUDC, and how to get involved.