Damar Hamlin Makes First Public Comment Since Mid-Game Collapse: 'If You Know Me...'
NFL player Damar Hamlin, who is currently recovering from a cardiac arrest, has made his first public comment since collapsing on the field on national television.
Hamlin's medical emergency occurred last week during a game between Hamlin's Buffalo Bills and the Cincinnati Bengals at Cincinnati's Paycor Stadium. The incident has drawn national attention, with fans and fellow athletes coming together to pray for Hamlin's recovery.
This warms my heart! @DanOrlovsky7, @ESPN analyst & former football player, cared enough for Damar Hamlin to pray for him right there on national TV. He wasn’t afraid to say “I believe in prayer!” I do too Dan—thanks for setting an example for others to follow. pic.twitter.com/OwdagAsdtT
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) January 4, 2023
a beautiful moment for Damar Hamlin 💙pic.twitter.com/i69GVFf53u
— Jenna Harner (@JennaHarner11) January 8, 2023
Hamlin responded to the well-wishes on Saturday, writing in an Instagram post:
“When you put real love out into the world it comes back to you 3x’s as much. The Love has been overwhelming, but I’m thankful for every single person that prayed for me and reached out. We brung the world back together behind this.”
He added of his personal health, “If you know me you know this only gone make me stronger. On a long road keep praying for me!”
The post drew more than 1.5 million "likes" as of Sunday morning.
In order to show their love, many fans have donated to Hamlin's GoFundMe Christmas toy drive, created in 2020 when Hamlin was a student at the University of Pittsburgh. As of Sunday morning, over $8 million had been donated to the charity, well beyond its original, stated goal of $2,500.
While Hamlin is still in critical condition at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, his team said on Friday that he can now breathe on his own and he's shown no signs of neurological damage.
Per the physicians at UCMC, Damar’s breathing tube was removed overnight. He continues to progress remarkably in his recovery.
His neurologic function remains intact and he has been able to talk to his family and care team.
— Buffalo Bills (@BuffaloBills) January 6, 2023
Hamlin collapsed on the field during the "Monday Night Football" game after tackling Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins. He stood up after the tackle but then fell on his back seconds later.
— Matthew Miller Skow (@SkowMatthew) January 3, 2023
Medical staff performed CPR on Hamlin for over nine minutes and were forced to use a defibrillator.
One of his physicians, Dr. Timothy Pritts, said that when Hamlin woke up at the hospital, some of his first words were "Did we win?" to which Pritts responded: “Yes, Damar, you won. You’ve won the game of life.”
The Bills said Hamlin FaceTimed them on Friday where he spoke with his teammates and coaches.
— Buffalo Bills (@BuffaloBills) January 8, 2023
“Love you boys,” Hamlin reportedly told his team.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.