Buffalo Bills Hall of Fame Quarterback Jim Kelly was honored Wednesday during an emotional ESPY’s ceremony in which he received the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance.
The 58-year-old, who is recovering from surgery earlier this year to remove cancer from his upper jaw, stepped up to the podium while receiving an ovation after the touching introduction video.
“When I look across this arena and when I talk to people, you don’t need to be a Russell Wilson or Aaron Rodgers to make a difference out there, every single person in this room can be a difference maker,” said Kelly.
“You can be just a normal person that gets up every morning and goes to work but you can be a difference maker, putting a smile on,” he added.
The Jimmy V Award was named for the famed North Carolina State University coach Jim Valvano who died in 1993. Before losing his life to cancer, he inspired millions with his famous “Never Give Up” speech earlier that year.
“Remember that, always, always persevere like Jimmy V said, never, ever give up,” Kelly said.