Buffalo Bills Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly was in New York City on Tuesday to undergo testing to determine the impact chemotherapy and radiation treatment have had on his oral cancer.
Kelly’s wife, Jill, wrote the following message Tuesday on Facebook: “It’s scan day ... we fly to New York City this afternoon to do all the scans etc. to find out whether or not the treatments worked. I’m afraid. BUT … I’m asking God to make my faith greater than my fear. I know that HE ALREADY KNOWS THE OUTCOME! So I’m trusting what I don’t know to the ONE who knows!”
Jill Kelly concluded her Facebook post by asking people to “Please PRAY!”
On Twitter, the hash tag #for12at12 was trending earlier Tuesday. Fans were asked to pray for Kelly, who famously wore No. 12, at noon.
Jim Kelly is battling cancer that spread to his maxillary sinus cavity and adjacent tissues. He’s received treatments to fight countless microscopic tumors that spread up the infraorbital nerve in his head and are close to the carotid artery. He was at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan for an MRI, the results of which were not immediately available late Tuesday.
The Kellys have been far from alone in their fight. Fans from not only Western New York, but around the world have rallied in support. Earlier this month during his Hall of Fame induction speech, former Bills receiver Andre Reed called Jim Kelly “the toughest individual I’ve ever met in my life.”
While in Canton, Ohio, for the Hall of Fame festivities, Jim Kelly spoke to The Buffalo News about his anxiousness over Tuesday’s tests.
“I just wake up each and every day and say my prayers and hopefully, when they look at the scans, there’s not going to be anything there,” he said.
Kelly was originally diagnosed with squamous cell cancer in his upper jawbone in June 2013, and underwent surgery then.
“You have challenges, and you have to confront them head on,” Kelly said upon being diagnosed. “This is just another one. I’ve been to the top many, many times and I’ve been to the bottom. It’s just one of those roller-coaster rides I’ve been on throughout my life, and it’s just another challenge for me. I know I’ll beat it. That’s the bottom line.”
A follow-up visit with doctors at Erie County Medical Center in March showed that the cancer had returned. Because of the complexity and aggressive nature of the cancer, surgery was not an option for treatment.
Instead, Kelly went through a course of chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Those concluded in May.