In 2017, late night show host Jimmy Kimmel and his wife Molly McNearney welcomed their second child into the family.
William “Billy” John was just days old when he underwent heart surgery for a congenital heart defect known as “Tetralogy of Fallot with pulmonary atresia,” PEOPLE reported.
The dad of 2 opened up on Jimmy Kimmel Live! about those anxiety-filled first days in the hospital following Billy’s birth.
“It was the longest 3 hours of my life,” Kimmel shared with viewers, recalling the waiting period during that first surgery. Billy also had another heart surgery at 7 months of age.
The doctors and nurses at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and Cedars-Sinai Hospital took great care of the newborn, and Kimmel expressed his gratitude to as many as possible by name.
“It was an enormous team effort, it really was…” Kimmel said. Now that enormous effort is being praised again in celebration of Billy’s birthday.
In an Instagram post on Easter Sunday, Kimmel wished a happy 2nd birthday to his “little #Easter buddy Billy.”
“We are grateful always to the nurses and doctors at @CedarsSinai & @ChildrensLA who saved his life,” Kimmel wrote, “and all of you who prayed & sent positive thoughts our way. #HappyEaster”
Kimmel’s wife Molly McNearney also took to social media to recognize her son and express her continued gratitude for all who played a part in saving his life.
“Happy 2nd Birthday Billy,” McNearney tweeted. “Thanks to all the nurses and doctors at @ChildrensLA who saved his life. Sending love and prayers to all the families in the hospital today and always.”
Happy 2nd Birthday Billy. Thanks to all the nurses and doctors at @ChildrensLA who saved his life. Sending love and prayers to all the families in the hospital today and always. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/sdlblD66MG
— Molly McNearney (@mollymcnearney) April 21, 2019
What beautiful tributes these are! It’s never a small thing when a doctor or nurse makes a difference in a child’s life.
Kimmel and his wife clearly feel the same and are making sure they don’t take all the care their son has received for granted. Happy birthday, Billy! Here’s to another great year of good health and wide smiles!
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