Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin remains in critical condition at University of Cincinnati Medical Center after collapsing and suffering a cardiac arrest during the first quarter of the Bill’s Monday Night Football game against the Cincinnati Bengals. Hamlin made a tackle in the game, stood up after the play, then collapsed back down to the field. He received treatment on the field, then was taken by ambulance off the field and to the hospital.
The game was suspended after the injury, with the players and coaches in no condition to play after watching Hamlin’s situation. The stadium was completely silent as the fans all watched what was happening, and social media became a way for other NFL players, teams, and fans to express their disbelief and concern for Hamlin.
It did not take long for Hamlin’s “Chasing M’s” foundation to be found, with a GoFundMe from 2020 still active. The foundation was looking to raise $2,500 for a toy drive, an event that since then has become an annual tradition for Hamlin and the foundation. When it was found, the page showed the effort had raised a little under $10,000.
As of Tuesday morning, the effort was a little over $3.8 million. Trying to find a way to show their support for Hamlin, fans from all over the country and of all the league’s teams have been donating. During the night, there was a period where the donations were coming in at a rate of $5,000 per minute.
The description of the effort according to the GoFundMe page is:
As I embark on my journey to the NFL, I will never forget where I come from and I am committed to using my platform to positively impact the community that raised me. I created The Chasing M’s Foundation as a vehicle that will allow me to deliver that impact, and the first program is the 2020 Community Toy Drive.
This campaign gives you the opportunity to contribute to our first initiative and positively impact children who have been hardest hit by the pandemic. 100% of the funds raised will go toward the purchase of toys for kids in need. The time to act is now, as we will be distributing toys on December 22nd from 3:30 to 5:30 PM from Kelly and Nina’s Daycare Center at 800 Russellwood Ave., McKees Rocks, PA 15136.
If you are not able to contribute monetarily, you can support this initiative in other ways. We are accepting donated toys at the Daycare Center or simply spread the word by sharing this fundraiser on your social channels.
Thank you so much for supporting me on and off the field. I am grateful to have the opportunity to work with you to help make the holiday season a little brighter for the kids in our community.
Damar HamlinThe Chasing M’s Foundation
Update: The GoFundMe page has updated the description of the effort as donations are continuing to roll in on Tuesday. As of this update (1:15 p.m. ET), the donations have grown to over $4.2 million.
**UPDATE: This fundraiser was initially established to support a toy drive for Damar’s community, sponsored by the Chasing M’s Foundation.
However, it has received renewed support in light of Damar’s current battle and we can’t thank all of you enough. Your generosity and compassion mean the world to us.
If you would like to show your support and contribute to Damar’s community initiatives and his current fight, this is the place to do so. This is the only current fund that is being used by the Hamlin Family.
Again, thank you for your thoughts, prayers and generous support during this time.
Damar created The Chasing M’s Foundation to use as a vehicle to bring lasting impact to his community. The foundation supports toy drives, back-to-school drives, kids camps, and more. UPDATE**
Hamlin was selected in the sixth round of the 2021 NFL Draft - meaning he started this foundation as soon as he was able to under NCAA rules. He started this effort as a college student, just trying to give back.
And now the fans are trying to show their support for him in an extremely scary situation in the only way they really can. And it has not been only fans donating:
Fins Nation , I’ve made a donation to Damar Hamlin’s Foundation and encourage you to do the same. Bills Mafia rained down donations for Tua in a time of need, we should return the favor. Love— Blake Ferguson (@blakeferguson44) January 3, 2023
The Chasing M's Foundation Community Toy Drive
SB Nation spoke with a representative from GoFundMe as the donations continue to roll in. The representative stated, “Our team is doing everything to ensure this money gets to Damar’s foundation.”
If you can assist in any way in this incredible effort to show love and support to Hamlin, as well as help get toys for kids, you can head over to the GoFundMe page here: