Damar Hamlin wasn’t on the field last night when the Buffalo Bills took on the Cincinnati Bengals.
But the fact that he was on the sideline – or in the stadium at all – was nothing short of a miracle.
Of course the last time the Bills were in Cincinnati was on January 2, when Hamlin suffered a scary cardiac arrest on the field that left the safety unresponsive and receiving CPR on the field, leading to the Monday Night Football game eventually being cancelled in the middle of the first quarter.
Doctors have since stated that Hamlin suffered from “Commotio Cordis,” a rare cardiac arrest event that, according to the American Heart Association, is “an extremely rare consequence of blunt force trauma to the heart that happens at exactly the wrong time in the heart rhythm, causing the heart to stop beating effectively.”
But Hamlin has made a remarkable recovery, returning to the team and seeing his first in-game action earlier this season when the Bills took on the Miami Dolphins (after playing in all three of the Bills preseason games).
And though he was inactive on Sunday night, Hamlin was with his team this weekend as they returned to Cincinnati for the first time since his cardiac arrest.
Before the game, Hamlin took some time to visit with the medical professionals who saved his life, taking 10 of the medical staff from the University of Cincinnati Medical Center to dinner to thank them for their heroic efforts.
Hamlin also announced a scholarship, the Hamlin’s Cincinnati Heroes Scholarship, to help underserved students in Cincinnati attend private high schools, trade schools or universities in the area.
Last night I had dinner with my heroes. 10 of the UC Medical Staff that helped save my life.
I surprised them with a scholarship named after each of them that will support youth in Cincy to chase their dreams.
Can’t even imagine how it felt for Hamlin to return to that field, but it’s good to see that he’s using his platform to honor those who helped save his life – and the community that rallied around him.