To help his son feel confident about his birthmark, Dad spends 30 hours in the tattoo chair

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Thirty hours can seem like an eternity, especially when enduring an uncomfortable procedure. Just ask Derek Prue Sr., a father from Edmonton, Canada, who recently underwent an extensive chest tattooing session lasting that long. However, Derek’s motive was not a desire for suffering; he had a profound reason behind his decision to get inked.


Derek Prue Sr.’s 8-year-old son, Derek Jr., was born with a prominent rose-coloured birthmark covering a portion of his chest. During a family outing at a swimming pool, Derek Sr. noticed that his son consistently refused to remove his shirt around others, disheartening him. It became apparent that the young boy felt self-conscious about his birthmark.

Recognizing his son’s discomfort, Derek Sr. was moved to take action. He empathetically decided to get a tattoo mirroring his son’s birthmark, although he didn’t immediately disclose this plan to his son. With the assistance of his wife, who found a pretext to photograph their son’s birthmark, Derek Sr. approached Juicy Quill Tattoo with a uniquely touching request.


Tattoo artist Tony Gibbert, deeply touched by the request, expressed his admiration on Facebook: “This is one of the most remarkable and honourable acts I’ve ever witnessed—a father’s love for his son… truly awe-inspiring! Let’s remember to be humble and kind. Our differences make us special.”

Initially, Derek Sr. needed to be made aware of this endeavour’s time commitment. He recounted his initial visit, where he inquired about the progress after a few hours, only to learn that they were only completing the outline. The actual tattooing process took six to eight weeks and was far from comfortable. Tony explained, “He endured quite an ordeal sitting for that. It’s quite painful.”


However, the discomfort paled compared to the joy that erupted when Derek Sr. finally revealed his new tattoo. Derek Jr. was taken aback by his father’s transformed appearance at a family pool excursion. The young boy’s reaction mixed happiness and surprise: “I felt happy and confused. I didn’t expect him to do that.”

Derek Jr. embraces the confidence to swim without a shirt as long as his father is by his side. Witnessing his son’s newfound self-assuredness validated the arduous hours spent in the tattoo chair for Derek Sr. “Now we share the same marks for life,” the father remarked, highlighting the depth of their connection.


This extraordinary act of a parent going to such lengths to enhance their child’s comfort is a rarity. Derek Jr. undoubtedly stands as a fortunate child, benefiting from his father’s exceptional gesture.

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