Damar Hamlin warming up before Monday night’s game. Image: Getty Images
Following a CPR on the Paycor Stadium lawn Monday night, Bill safety Damar Hamlin’s recovery can only be described as a miraculous four days. On Friday, Buffalo announced the 24-year-old was speaking and his breathing tube was removed overnight. Hamlin was also able to communicate with teammates via FaceTime.
“He continues to make remarkable progress in his recovery,” the Bills said in a statement. “His neurological function remains intact and he has been able to communicate with his family and care team.”
What did Hamlin say to his teammates? “I love you guys,” the Bills said. The positive news about Hamlin’s health has been pouring in since Thursday morning, when it was reported he was able to communicate in writing with Cincinnati medical staff and hold the hands of family members. Hamlin woke up after being intubated since collapsing Monday night after what appeared to be a routine tackle on Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins.
Aside from being in a hospital himself, attending a professional sporting event was possibly the happiest place for Hamlin to go into cardiac arrest, as Advanced Life Support was at his side in seconds. A Buffalo employee was recognized for his quick response to Hamlin’s condition. The Bills’ assistant athletic coach, Denny Kellington, has been with the team since 2017 and was one of the first medical workers to reach Hamlin. Kellington reportedly began performing CPR almost immediately. A defibrillator and other first responders helped restore Hamlin’s heartbeat on the lawn.