Peyton Hillis is widely remembered for his remarkable 2010 season with the Cleveland Browns rushing for nearly 1,200 yards. However, there is a better reason why he should be celebrated—his heroic act on January 4th.
During a family trip to the beach, Peyton Hillis emerged as a true hero when he saved the lives of two children, one of whom was his own nine-year-old son. Hillis recounted the gripping incident on Good Morning America, highlighting the most terrifying moment of all.
Peyton Hillis: “It is 100% a miracle that somebody didn't die.” ??
Hillis wouldn't call himself a "Hero"
"So what do you call yourself?"
"I call myself a dad."
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) June 13, 2023
“I think the scariest point … was when I’m swimming to my son and I have to pass by him because my niece is in more danger,” Hillis said. “I knew that I had to pass him up to get to Camille first. Because, you know, if I didn’t then there’s no way she would’ve made it.”
As a parent, the overwhelming fear Peyton Hillis must have experienced is unimaginable. However, his swift and selfless action ultimately led to the rescue of both his son and his niece. Unfortunately, upon returning with his son, Hillis lost consciousness and faced serious health complications, including lung and kidney failure.
Hillis spent two grueling weeks in the hospital. Ten of those days were spent unconscious and on a ventilator.
Reflecting on the situation, Hillis acknowledged, “It is 100 percent a miracle that someone didn’t die.”
After seven seasons in the NFL, Hillis retired following the 2014 season.