ABC News reported today on Jimmy Kimmel’s touching opening monologue last night on his talk show, Jimmy Kimmel Live. In his 13-minute opening monologue, Kimmel recounted the story of his newborn son William’s birth, heart disease diagnosis, and subsequent open-heart surgery. The clip has spread like wildfire throughout the Internet as many flock to support Kimmel and applaud his willingness to be so open, candid, and honest on his show.
Kimmel told his live audience and viewers tuning in that shortly after his wife gave birth to their son Billy on April 21st, a heart murmur was detected which led to an eventual discovery of a more serious heart disease called tetralogy of Fallot with pulmonary atresia, which is essentially where the heart’s pulmonary valve is completely blocked and a hole is present between the left and right sides of the heart. Billy was quickly taken to the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles where he underwent open-heart surgery. Kimmel says, “The operation was a success. It was the longest three hours of my life.”
Throughout the story, Kimmel bordered on tears, but was still able to make his typical cutting jokes (such as his self-deprecating crack, “The poor kid, not only did he get a bad heart, but he got my face.”) and was able to find some retrospective light in the emotional scenario. The talk show host also gave time to read a list of names of the nurses, doctors, and other people who helped him and his wife through Billy’s medical emergency. Kimmel stressed to his audience, “It was an enormous team effort, it really was.” According to Kimmel, Billy will have another surgery in a few months to fix the hole in his heart and another procedure as a teen. Billy is doing well now, and Kimmel has been giving updates on his twitter account.
sincere thanks for the outpouring of love & support – Dr. Jane is keeping a close ear on Billy, who is very well – XO pic.twitter.com/QgSUminhmg
— Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel) May 2, 2017
Kimmel decided to end his monologue on a political note and touched upon Donald Trump’s recent attempted maneuvers in the healthcare arena as he spoke. “President Trump last month proposed a 6 billion dollar cut in funding to the National Institute of Health, and thank god our Congressmen made a deal last night to not go along with that. They actually increased funding by 2 billion dollars, and I applaud them for doing that,” Kimmel said. In one of the most poignant points of the entire monologue, Kimmel called for unity and mobilization concerning healthcare. Talking to the recent heated political debates around repealing Obamacare, Kimmel emphasized, “Let’s stop with the nonsense, this isn’t football; there are no teams. We are the team – it’s the United States. Don’t let their partisan squabbles divide us on something every decent person wants. We need to take care of each other.” Many high-profile Democratic politicians commended Kimmel’s comments, with Hillary Clinton, Senator Chuck Schumer, and even Barack Obama tweeting to Kimmel and thanking him for sharing his story.
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) May 2, 2017
Well said, Jimmy. That’s exactly why we fought so hard for the ACA, and why we need to protect it for kids like Billy. And congratulations! https://t.co/77F8rZrD3P — Barack Obama (@BarackObama) May 2, 2017
Jimmy Kimmel also urged any watching to help children in need and donate to the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles at CHLA.org/Donate. Jimmy Kimmel Live airs on ABC every weeknight at 11:35 pm EST.