Buffalo Bills player Damar Hamlin hopes to get back to playing football eventually after suffering a cardiac arrest during a game in January.
Hamlin sat down for his first TV interview since the collapse with Michael Strahan on “Good Morning America”, which aired Monday, with him admitting he’s grateful to be alive.
He told Strahan he wants to return to the NFL eventually, but knows he has a lot to work through first, despite doing well physically.
“I’m still working through things,” he said of his emotional recovery. “I’m still trying to process all the emotions and the trauma that comes from, you know, dealing with a situation like that and not really having people around or, you know, like, no one in my immediate circle who’s dealt with something like that.”
Hamlin said of the collapse and being grateful to be alive, “That just kinda put things in perspective for me, you know, hearing it from the doctor.
“Things could have went differently and the details of the situation of everything that happened on the field — it could have been — it could have been the last of me.”
Hamlin credited Denny Kellington — the assistant athletic trainer for the Bills, who immediately began performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation, or CPR, on him — for saving his life.
“I owe Denny my life,” the sportsman insisted. “Literally. He loves to say he was just doing his job, which is true, you know? And that night, he was literally the saviour of my life.”
He added, “I’m truly thankful for and I don’t take for granted.”
Hamlin declined to discuss what doctors believe may have caused his heart to stop beating, telling Strahan that tests were ongoing.
He shared, “I’m just thankful [God] gave me a second chance, you know, just to live normally and just come out almost without a scratch on me. Just to be able to keep going.”