WATCH: Damar Hamlin Honors Medical Team Who Saved His Life
During Thursday night’s NFL Honors, a special moment was reserved to recognize the unsung heroes who helped save one of our own.
It’s hard to believe it’s been over a month since Western New York was glued to their televisions, in disbelief about what was happening on the Monday Night Football broadcast in front of them.
On January 2nd, When Bills safety Damar Hamlin collapsed after a tackle and appeared to go into cardiac arrest during the first quarter against the Bengals, it felt to those watching like time was standing still. The emotional reaction of the players and coaches on the field, along with the fans around the world, is something we will never forget.
The medical staff of the Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals, and University of Cincinnati Medical Center deserve the credit for saving Hamlin’s life, thanks to their swift and tireless action on and off the field. So it was only appropriate that during the NFL Honors, an event to spotlight the very best of the NFL season, this group of outstanding first responders received their due on stage.
During Thursday night’s telecast, a group of all three medical teams were introduced on stage to raucous, well-deserved applause. Shortly after, the man himself, Damar Hamlin, was brought to the stage - causing the audience full of NFL’s most powerful figures to roar and rise to their feet.
The crowd remained standing throughout Hamlin’s entire uplifting 3-minute speech, where he proceeded to thank God for “even being here” and fans around the world for their hope and prayers.
“My vision was about playing in the NFL and being the best player that I could be. But God’s plan was to have a purpose greater than any game in this world...
I felt like God was using me to give others hope...I have a long journey ahead - a journey full of unknowns and a journey full of milestones. But it’s a lot easier to face your fears when you know your purpose.”
After many more emotional moments that caused him to pause and choke back tears, Hamlin saved his biggest “thank you” for the end. He paid homage to a UCMC doctor named Yousef, who he met during his third night in the ICU. Yousef told Hamlin that he suffered from a similar experience but reassured him that he was okay and that Hamlin would eventually be as well.
The entire segment was a wonderful moment and the highlight of the entire NFL Honors ceremony. Fans around the world, especially here in Western New York, were touched by Hamlin’s sentiments and are even more excited to witness his incredible progress - progress that will hopefully get him back onto the field that he loves soon.
As Hamlin said at the end of his speech, “The journey will continue.”
Watch Damar Hamlin’s moving speech in its entirety below.