The world watched as Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin went into cardiac arrest.
By Abhiveer Singh
Damar Hamlin has been a popular topic of discussion since his recent medical incident during a football game. The young safety started his career at Central Catholic High School. During his time at the school, he was able to become a four-star recruit and received many offers from football programs like Pittsburgh, Penn State, Ohio State and Temple. He decided to continue his athletic career at the University of Pittsburgh, where he spent the next five years. During his freshman year, Hamlin suffered a season-ending injury that would have derailed most athletes’ careers. However, many argue his resilience and ability to bounce back are unmatched and allowed him to push through this setback. Over the following four seasons at Pittsburgh, Hamlin racked up 275 tackles. His impact on the field allowed him to earn a ticket to the NFL draft, where he was selected by the Buffalo Bills in the sixth round.
Artwork by Sabeena Ramdarie
Damar Hamlin proudly represents his football team, the Buffalo Bills.
On January 2, during a game against the Bengals, Hamlin suffered a cardiac arrest on the field. He was rushed to the hospital, and the game was canceled.
"I couldn’t believe what happened on the field. I felt that the NFL has to implement better safety and health rules. There is no reason why it should take such a long time for the ambulance to arrive on the field. The time it took to get the ambulance there could have risked Damar's life," junior Vincent Jiang said.
A few days after the incident, Hamlin woke up and was hopeful for his recovery. As reported in People Magazine, after waking up, he facetimed his teammates and told them, "I love you boys." At this time, his family and doctors reported his quick recovery, in which he was able to breathe on his own.
Though the young star has woken up, he still has a way to go before he steps back on the field. He is still recovering since his time spent in the ICU, where he was unconscious and was on a ventilator. Hamlin has a long road to return to the field, and his recovery has astounded many.
At the 2023 NFLPA awards, Hamlin won the Alan Page Community Award. He was able to walk across the stage, accept the honor and deliver a speech.
"It’s exciting hearing his remarkable progress. I look forward to seeing him back on the field. I think he is a truly impactful player," junior Christopher Diep said.
Hamlin’s passions on the field drive him to show his gratitude off the field. The young NFL star runs a charity called “The Chasing M’s Foundation” to support young people through education and sports. His charity has received over eight million dollars in the past few weeks, which will be used to give back to his home community.
"To hear all the work he is doing to help people off the field is remarkable. This makes me like him even more," junior Gordon Mun said.
As Damar Hamlin takes steps to return to the NFL, many look forward to seeing what his future holds.