/  12.15.2021

Nick Cannon opened up about one of the hardest experiences of his life thus far: losing his youngest son. During a recent interview with People, he let fans in on the tough conversations that followed Zen Cannon‘s brain cancer diagnosis.

“We started asking, ‘Is there a way to prevent this? If not, how long do we have?'” he explained. “The conversations quickly turned to, ‘How can we give him the best life for the time that he does have?’ It could be weeks, it could be months, it could be years.”

“We were having quality-of-life conversations,” he continued. “We could have had that existence where he would’ve had to live in the hospital, hooked up to machines, for the rest of the time.” After much thought, Cannon and Zen’s mother, Alyssa Scott, decided that their son would forgo chemo — a decision rooted in the television host’s own experience with the aggressive treatment.

“From someone who’s had to deal with chemotherapy before, I know that pain. To see that happen to a 2-month-old, I didn’t want that. I didn’t want him to suffer,” said Cannon, who took a chemo drug after his near-death experience with lupus.

Instead, he and Scott opted to make sure Zen was  “as happy as he could possibly be.”

“We focused on Disneyland, our favorite place,” Cannon said. “Every month we would celebrate his birthday, just really seeing it as a victory every time he had a milestone that he was still here with us.” Unfortunately, over the Thanksgiving holiday, the baby’s condition began to worsen as he went seconds without breathing.

According to the comedian, he and Zen’s mother took their son to the beach, where they spent their last moments with him. He passed away on Dec. 5.

Following Zen’s passing, Nick Cannon paid homage to his late son numerous times on his self-titled daytime talk show. His most visible tribute came in the form of a tattoo featuring Zen as an angel.

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