Talkshow host Jimmy Kimmel has spoken candidly about his son’s life-saving heart surgeries…
This comes as Kimmel attended the 2022 Children’s Hospital Los Angeles Gala with his wife.
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Everyone knows Jimmy Kimmel for his iconic talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live!
He’s amassed over 11 billion views and has more than 15 billion subscribers on his YouTube channel.
Kimmel has bagged major interviews with some of the biggest stars…
And even bagged several awards…
Back in 2012, Kimmel was awarded an Emmy for Outstanding Variety Series.
But that’s not the only thing that has flourished in Kimmel’s life…
After working for 6 years with Molly McNearney on his show, Kimmel married his colleague in 2013…
According to PEOPLE, she was the only female writer on the show, and McNearney developed a camaraderie with Kimmel while the 2 were dating other people.
Kimmel was even married to Gina Maddy, but they divorced in 2002.
Soon after, they eventually both found themselves single, and after the late-night show host prepared a meal of McNearney’s favorite foods.
Reportedly, they got engaged while on a safari in Africa and then went ahead and tied the knot in 2013 in Ojai, California.
They welcomed their son William John Billy Kimmel in 2017.
It was later reported that Billy was born with a congenital heart condition.
Kimmel has been quite open about his son’s heart condition…
And in 2017, he even broke down in tears speaking about his son: “I just know he’s not really going to care, and also knowing he’s my son, he’s probably going to make fun of me for it,” he told Matt Lauer in a sit-down for Today. “I will say, that will make me feel better than anything.”
Kimmel also said that he hoped his son would not know how he felt at that moment.
“My problems and my worries shouldn’t be his problems or his worries. I think he’s going to have enough to worry about growing up with this questionable heart in his body, and I just want him to worry about hitting a home run in Little League,” he said.
Kimmel added that he doesn’t understand a lot of the backlash he received and attacks on his children and wife.
“It’s hard to deal with, especially hard for my wife. You have to put it out of your head, and you have to understand that most people would not do that if they were having a one-on-one conversation with you, and that sometimes people are just trying to get a reaction out of you,” he said.
As per reports, 3 days after Billy’s April birth, Kimmel and his wife learned their son needed to have open heart surgery.
Kimmel added that “It is a scary story… but it has a happy ending.”
According to UNILAD, at first, he and McNearney assumed their son was fine. However, a nurse noticed a murmur in his heart and also that his skin appeared “a bit purple.”
“[The doctors] determined he wasn’t getting enough oxygen in his blood, either in his heart or lungs. They did an x-ray and his lungs were fine, which meant his heart wasn’t. It’s a terrifying thing,” Kimmel said.
“They found that Billy was born with a heart disease.”
Kimmel said that doctors assumed Billy had a hole on both sides of his heart, so was rushed to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles for heart surgery, where his operation was a success. 6 days later, Kimmel and McNearney were able to take their newborn son home.
Since then, he’s had 2 major open heart surgeries to treat the defects.
5 years later, the couple celebrated Billy’s 5th birthday in April this year…
Kimmel captioned the post: “Happy 5th birthday to our little nut. We are eternally grateful to the brilliant doctors and nurses at @ChildrensLA & @CedarsSinai for saving Billy’s life and to those of you whose donations, prayers and positive thoughts meant everything,” he wrote.
You can see the post here.
Since then, Kimmel attended the 2022 Children’s Hospital Los Angeles Gala with his wife, where he spoke with reporters about their son.
“He’s doing great. He still needs one open-heart surgery, but he’s doing great,” Kimmel said.
He added that Billy is “one big reason” for the couple to attend and support the charity.
“He’s not that big,” Kimmel joked. “He’s about three feet tall.”
“He has no idea what we’re up to [tonight], nor would he care. I tried to explain the heart surgery to him because he has a bit of scar down the center of his chest, and he has almost no interest,” Kimmel laughed.
He then went ahead and explained what his son has been through…
“Our son, Billy, had two open-heart surgeries here, he was born with two heart defects, and they fixed them up real good, so we’re very grateful,” Kimmel explained.
He also said that although he’s been involved with the charity since a very long time before Billy was born, they never thought their family would be receiving care from the organization.
“We never imagined that this organization that we’d supported financially and by hosting events for them would be a place that we needed to go — so that came as a bit of a shock, but it all worked out,” he said.
We hope Billy continues to make a good recovery!