Zen tragically died back in December. He would have turned 1 on Thursday.
Nick Cannon and Alyssa Scott have announced a new foundation in honor of their late son, Zen, with the goal of helping to find a cure for pediatric cancer.
Nick and Alyssa took to their Instagrams on Friday and announced the Zen's Light Foundation, whose mission "is to foster global excellence in hope, grief-care, and pediatric healthcare for families and children in need." Nick and Alyssa attended "a beautiful lighting ceremony to honor the life of an Angel" to commemorate the occasion.
Zen's parents also thanked the Children's Hospital of Orange County for helping them pull off the inaugural event.
"Can't wait for next year where our Lighting Gala will continue [to] grow to help find a cure for pediatric [c]ancer, further research and help console more families during difficult times," the caption concluded.
The foundation announcement comes one day after Alyssa posted a video montage of Zen on what would have been his first birthday. The video montage, set to Vince Gill's "Go Rest High on That Mountain," included some of Zen's cutest moments, from snippets of Alyssa holding Zen and her daughter hanging out with the baby boy in the crib to Zen smiling while donning Mickey Mouse pajamas.
Alyssa captioned the post, saying, "Happy heavenly birthday Zen. At the root of all the emotions I have today there is insurmountable love. I always try my best to remain positive but right now I can’t help but cry out 'it’s not suppose to be like this.'"
She added, "In my mind I can see him smashing his cake and crawling around, tugging at my legs. But the reality is I will be the one to blow out his first candle. I will wish he was still here with us. GO REST HIGH 🤍 We miss you in the physical Son but feel you spiritually and fulfilling with you eternally. Happy Birthday! We love you Zen."
Hours later, Nick reposted the same video and wrote in his caption, "#REPOST The loving, nurturing, irrefrangible and strength filled Amazing Mother @itsalyssaemm said it way better than I could ever."
Back in December, Nick announced on his since-canceled eponymous daytime talk show that his 5-month-old son died of brain cancer and a subsequent tumor. Nick and Alyssa welcomed Zen back in June 2021, making him Nick's seventh child.
"Over the weekend I lost my youngest son to a condition called hydrocephalus that is pretty much a malignant, midline brain tumor -- brain cancer," he said on his show. According to the Mayo Clinic, hydrocephalus "is the buildup of fluid in the cavities (ventricles) deep within the brain. The excess fluid increases the size of the ventricles and puts pressure on the brain."
"I always noticed he had a cough and so I wanted to check it out," he said. "He had this interesting breathing and by the time he was two months I noticed he had this nice sized head too -- a Cannon head. We didn’t think anything of it. But I wanted to take him to the doctor for his sinus and breathing. We thought it would be routine."
Just days after Zen's tragic death, Alyssa also took to social media and shared the heartbreak she's enduring with an emotional tribute.
"Oh my sweet Zen. The soreness I felt in my arm from holding you is slowly fading away. It’s a painful reminder that you are no longer here," Alyssa wrote in the emotional tribute. "I caught myself looking in the backseat as I was driving only to see the mirror no longer reflecting your perfect face back at me. When I close a door too loudly I hold my breath and wince knowing a soft cry will shortly follow. It doesn’t come. The silence is deafening."
"These last 5 months we have been in this race together. We would hand the baton off to each other. You kept me going," she continued. "It would be the middle of the night and you would smile at me. A surge of energy would fill my body and pure joy would radiate from within me. We were a team, both determined to see it through. It feels unbearable running without you now. I can’t."