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January 4, 2023 11:44 am

New England Patriots’ Jewish Owner Robert Kraft Makes Symbolic ‘Chai’ Donation to Damar Hamlin’s Toy Drive After Athlete’s Cardiac Arrest


avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

Robert Kraft. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Robert Kraft, the Jewish owner of the New England Patriots, and his NFL team have donated $18,003, a number that holds symbolic value in the Jewish faith, to Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin’s toy drive after the NFL player collapsed on the football field on Monday night.

In the Hebrew alphabet, each letter corresponds to a number and 18 spells out the word “chai,” which is the Hebrew word for life. The “3” refers to Hamlin’s jersey number.

The symbolism was first noticed by NFL Nation reporter Mike Reiss. Other Patriots players who donated to the fund include Lawrence Guy, Brian Hoyer and Myles Bryant, and former Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.

Hamlin, 24, started a GoFundMe campaign two years ago to support a toy drive for his hometown of McKees Rocks, PA, sponsored by the Chasing M’s Foundation. The original goal of the GoFundMe was $2,500 but donations have been flooding in since the athlete’s collapse on Monday and it has now hit $6 million.

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Hamlin collapsed and went into cardiac arrest after being involved in a tackle with Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins during the first quarter of their “Monday Night Football” game this past week. After paramedics performed CPR on the field and restored his heartbeat, Hamlin was taken via ambulance to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, where he remains in critical condition.

The game was temporarily suspended after Hamlin was taken off the field and then indefinitely postponed.

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