Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin received a hero’s welcome at Super Bowl LVII on Sunday.
Before the kickoff, the 24-year-old was announced as a special guest, along with the first responders and professionals who saved his life after he collapsed on the field at the Bills vs. Cincinnati Bengals game on Jan. 2.
Fellow athletes and fans celebrated on social media after seeing Hamlin at the big game. Tennis legend Billie Jean King tweeted, “How wonderful to see Damar Hamlin on the field. Continued prayers for his full return to health, and a big thank you to all the first responders and medical staff who saved his life.”
“Seeing Damar Hamlin in Arizona this week for the #SuperBowl is one of the best sports stories I’ve seen,” tweeted The Extra Point podcast host Mark McClune.
Hamlin has made an amazing recovery since suffering a cardiac arrest. Medics on the scene were able to perform CPR and restore his heartbeat on the field. He was transferred to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, where he spent nearly a week in intensive care. He was later transferred to a hospital in Buffalo, New York, where he was checked out on Jan. 11.
In his first public statement after he was hospitalized, Hamlin said, “When you put real love into the world it comes back 3x as much. The love has been overwhelming, but I’m thankful for every single person that has prayed and reached out. We brung the world back together behind this. If you know me, you know this only gone make me stronger. On a long road keep praying for me!”