Buffalo Bills Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly is home and recovering after having surgery to remove a cyst on his spinal cord on Feb. 8.
Kelly said he’d been trying to manage the chronic pain in his back for a long time, but the pain from the cyst pushing into his spinal cord was “excruciating.”
“My family’s been yelling at me for a long time, but I kept putting it off, putting it off, putting it off,” Kelly said prior to surgery. “And I got to a point where I can’t put it off anymore.”
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I’m at home recovering from my recent back surgery (thank YOU for PRAYING). Been watching all the new HALL OF FAME inductees getting their busts done…ENJOY the process men. Being in the Hall of Fame is the highest honor as an NFL player. It’s a privilege and a blessing to be included with the best of the best. Looking back and appreciating my own journey. Wow! So much has happened since those days. I am blessed!
On Feb. 11, Kelly posted an update on his Instagram account, thanking followers for their prayers and support.
“I’m at home recovering from my recent back surgery,” the former quarterback wrote. “Thank YOU for PRAYING.”
Kelly’s wife, Jill Kelly, also spent time in prayer during her husband’s surgery.
“Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to pray for others while I wait for Jim’s surgery to end,” she wrote. “As you take care of me, I want to take care of others by praying for them.”
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Happy birthday to my little buddy in the sky. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about him and what we would be doing at that moment. As tears flow down my face right now, I know I will see him again with tears of JOY. I LOVE AND MISS YOU HUNTER. Happy Birthday HB. ??❤️???
Kelly was home from the hospital in time to be with his family on Valentine’s Day, a bittersweet day for the Kelly family.
Kelly, born on Feb. 14, 1960, shares a birthday with his late son, Hunter Kelly, who was born on the same day in 1997.
Hunter Kelly passed away in 2005 at the age of 8 from a fatal nervous system disease known as Krabbe disease.
This year on Valentine’s Day, the Kelly family visited Hunter’s grave, marking the bittersweet day together.
“Happy birthday to my little buddy in the sky,” Kelly wrote. “There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about him and what we would be doing at that moment. As tears flow down my face right now, I know I will see him again with tears of JOY.”
Hunter’s story is just one of the many trials the Kelly family has faced and come through with the #kellytough mentality that Jim Kelly was known for as a player.
With his most recent procedure behind him, Kelly can look forward to resuming the activities he loves most — time spent building into his faith, family and, of course, enjoying football.
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