Damar Hamlin shows appreciation in moving video message
Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin took to Instagram on Saturday to thank a host of people in his first detailed comments since collapsing and going into cardiac arrest on the field during a game Monday night football on January 2.
“Now that my brothers have wrapped up a solid winning season, as I continue to make so much progress recovering, I think it’s finally a good time to share a few things,” Hamlin said in a post titled “From heart”.
“I think it was important for me to wait and speak publicly at the right time because it was just a lot to process inside myself mentally, physically, even spiritually. It was just a lot to process, but I don’t can’t tell you how much I appreciate all the love, all the support and everything that just came my way.
“What happened to me on Monday Night Football, I think, is a direct example of God using me as a vehicle to share my passion and love straight from my heart with the whole world. And now I am able to give it back to children and communities around the world who need it most, and that has always been my dream. It has always been what I have stood for and what I will continue to stand for.
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Hamlin then thanked several groups of people.
The first was the Bills’ training staff, including Denny Kellington, who performed CPR on the field. Hamlin thanked first responders and staff at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, where he was taken and stayed after leaving Paycor Stadium, and Buffalo General Hospital, where he was transferred Jan. 9 .
Hamlin then thanked his family and friends: “To my mother and my father, who are literally my anchors and my everything that has never left me all the time. To my little brother, who is my why. My reason why I strive to be my best self every day. And to all of my family and friends who have supported me in so many ways during this time, whether it’s showing up for visits, or just a simple text just to see how I was doing.
The 24-year-old also paid tribute to Bills Mafia.
“I just want to thank you for your sincere love and support,” Hamlin told fans. “With what’s happening to me, I’ve felt nothing less than love and it’s really helped keep me encouraged through the toughest times and toughest times. I really can’t tell you. thank you enough.”
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Hamlin thanked the Bills organization, including “my brothers who made it their priority to uplift me spiritually, mentally and in every way possible. Reaching out every day, seeing how I was doing. Calling, sending SMS, just watch me, no matter what I’m proud to be part of this team, I’m proud to be able to call you my brothers.
Hamlin then thanked the city of Cincinnati, the Bengals and the rest of the NFL “for putting team allegiance aside to root the life of a child and just the humanity of a player who wears Buffalo. Blue. You put humanity above team loyalty. You showed the unity of the world rather than division. I’m not surprised but I’m deeply grateful and I will forever be grateful and indebted for it.”
He also thanked the children who sent him “heartwarming letters and gifts”.
“You mean the world to me. You made my day, every day. You inspire me to keep dreaming big and keep helping to make this world a better place.”
Hamlin also thanked those who donated to his “Chasing M’s” foundation, which saw donations top $8 million following its collapse.
“Although I am so grateful to everyone, I know that being grateful is not enough. This is just the beginning of the impact I wanted to have on the world and with God’s guidance, I will continue to do wonderful things and great things. I couldn’t do this without the support and love and I look forward to continuing to take you on this journey with me,” Hamlin concluded, making a heart with his hands.