Hall of Fame QB Jim Kelly’s Wife Says 7 Inspiring Words About God After Cancer Returns

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Far too many people have experienced the heartbreaking reality of a cancer diagnosis among family, friends and colleagues.

Even worse is when cancer comes back after years of being cancer-free.

That, sadly, is the reality for Buffalo Bills Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly as he has been diagnosed again with oral cancer after being cancer-free since September 2014.

“As our family has faced many trials and triumphs throughout the years, you have blessed us with your prayers. We are asking for those prayers once again,” Kelly said. “With all of you by my side, we will fight and win this battle together.”

Despite the shock and sadness that comes with the diagnosis, his wife, Jill, is holding on to what she knows is true. 

 “God is a promise maker and keeper,” she said.

“But eternity…is FOREVER. Because we know that our eternity is secure in Christ, we can trust God with every breath upon this earth,” she wrote.

Kelly was first diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma in June 2013 and had to have some of his upper jaw removed.

When follow-up tests revealed cancer had spread into his sinus, he had to go through radiation and chemotherapy treatments, and lost 70 pounds in the process.

The former quarterback has trouble speaking, can’t produce saliva and has lost his sense of taste as long-term effects of the disease.

Kelly played 11 seasons with the Bills before he retired after the 1996 season.

Bills players and NFL teams posted encouraging messages for Kelly on Twitter.

“Jim is a tough and courageous man, and we know he will fight this battle with strength and determination,” the Bills said in a statement released by the team.

“The Buffalo Bills will support the Kelly family during this trying time, and we ask our fans to pray for the family, as Jim beings the treatment process and the road to recovery.”

Kelly, for his part, is staying positive about the entire circumstance.

“I have no room to complain,” Kelly said. “If tomorrow the good Lord decides that’s my last day, then I’m not going to go down with a frown. I’m going down with a smile on my face, knowing that I’ve gotten everything out of life.”

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Hall of Fame former Bills quarterback Jim Kelly has been diagnosed with cancer for the third time.

Kelly said in a statement. “The oral cancer we hoped would be gone forever has returned. Although I was shocked and deeply saddened to receive this news, I know that God is with me. I continuously talk about the four F’s. Faith, Family, Friends and Fans. With all of you by my side, we will fight and win this battle together. Staying ‘Kelly Tough’ and trusting God will carry us though this difficult time.”

Kelly was first diagnosed with cancer in his upper jaw in June 2013 and was declared cancer-free after a surgery to remove part of the jaw. (Kelly was given a prosthesis to replace the six teeth and portion of bone removed in the surgery.) Doctors discovered more evidence of cancer in March 2014 and he was again declared cancer-free that August after radiation treatment and chemotherapy.

Jim Kelly’s daughter, Erin posted on Instagram:


ekelly1212Words feel inadequate.
Truthfully, it’s hard to even comprehend that I’m writing this…
My dad’s cancer is back.
I don’t understand. But I have to choose to hold onto the only thing I am sure of… Jesus.
Lord Jesus…
I know my dad and I know our family…with Your strength, he will continue to persevere and fight like never before and we will fight right along with him…knowing that You have already won the war. Because of You we always have hope!

Many fans responded:

  • engertpetrillo6Praying!
  • mike.bongiovanniPrayers for you and your family …. 🙂
  • dweb464I pray for your dad. I know the battle all to well. May God bless and heal him. Pulling for you Jim !!! All my prayers ?
  • elisayre25??
  • edryan.34You got this Jumbo.
  • edryan.34Jimbo #12kellytough
  • miss.missundaztood@laura_c_neu god bless you and your children during such a rough time I lost my father in my 20s not only was I young, but so was he. Hugs.
  • miss.missundaztoodHello Erin, I know you dont know me from Adam but I just want you to know all of Buffalo is thinking of you and your family during this time… MAY THE LORD HOLD YOU CLOSE, SUSTAIN YOU, HEAL YOU AND STRENGTHEN YOU. HE GOES BEFORE YOU AND WALKS BESIDE YOU! WHEN THE STORM RAGES, HE CALMS IT. CONTINUED PRAYERS FOR ALL OF YOU!
  • marg_willPrayers for healing. Jesus I Trust in You
  • gypsytat?
  • lillian337@krich_23
  • georgeretiredGood luck god bless!
  • jill187Hey Jim remember you said at the 3rd time to Super Bowl …. 3rd Time is a Charm.. well it didn’t come then because the Universe had a better plan for that Charm …. NOW !!!!!! So Big & Go Kelly Strong ?

Resources: Liftable, ESPN

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1 Comment
  1. Had E. Nuff says

    God’s plans are not always our plans but in the end He always has a better one for us when we follow His plans – an eternity with Him rather than the alternative which those goats on His “Left” will have wished that they had headed to rather than trying to be little gods upon themselves – they know who they are!

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