Buffalo Bills Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly announced on Monday he has been diagnosed with cancer in his upper jaw bone and will have surgery this Friday.
The announcement was made just before the start of the quarterback's Kelly For Kids charitable foundation's annual celebrity golf tournament in Batavia.
Kelly spent 11 seasons with the Bills before retiring following the 1996 season. He is the most popular player ever to put on a Bills uniform and the most valuable. He was the trigger man in transformimg a losing franchise into a winning franchise.
Kelly has always treated the people of western, New York as family. He is one of us. He married a local girl from Attica, and makes his home in Orchard Park. He has never left the area since arriving in town back in 1986.
So as we learned of Kelly's cancer, it was as if a family member being diagnosed.
All of us have been through the ups and downs of Kelly's career and his personal life. We supported the Hunter's Hope Foundation in honor of his son, Hunter, who was born in 1997 with Krabbe disease, and when his son passed in 2005.
Kelly's leadership, toughness, and his willingness to win turned the Bills into a model franchise of the NFL while leading them to four straight super bowls. He was and still is the face of the franchise.