NFL Star Damar Hamlin Surprises His Grandma with Home Makeover Months After Cardiac Arrest 

NFL star Damar Hamlin watched his grandmother Portia "work hard" and support others for his entire life.

Now, the 25-year-old Buffalo Bills player says, "It's my turn to return the favor" as he renovates his grandmother's Pittsburgh home on Friday's episode of Secret Celebrity Renovation.

In a PEOPLE exclusive clip from the episode, above, Hamlin returns to his Pennsylvania hometown, 

where he uncovers family photos and sentimental tokens from his childhood alongside the show's interior designer, Sabrina Soto.

The team starts their renovation by cleaning out Portia's closet, which was full of memorabilia from Hamlin's early days in football. 

 Among the items is his Pittsburgh Panthers jersey and a poster signed by his teammates. Hamlin played for the University of Pittsburgh from 2016 until 2020.

"I remember this cardigan like it was yesterday," Hamlin says when Soto finds a school portrait of the young athlete dressed in an argyle green sweater. 

 Another photo shows a very young Hamlin smiling. "This was the first picture day when I started smiling," 

he shares, adding that he used to hide his teeth in photos. "I don’t know why, I was insecure as a youngin," he says.

When he finds a photograph from his parent's wedding ceremony, Hamlin shares that "being at my mom and dad's wedding" was one of his "favorite memories." 

 A later discovery reminds the NFL star that his father, Mario Hamlin, was his team's coach when he won his first Little League Championship. 

 Mario, 42, played college football alongside his brother. On Friday's episode of the CBS series, the Bills safety points out both his father and his uncle in their team's group photo from the time.

“Football is in my genes," Hamlin says as he reflects on the image. "Football is in my pockets.”

Now its third season, Secret Celebrity Renovation gives stars the opportunity to surprise someone who played an important role in their road to success with a home makeover. 

In addition to Hamlin, this season includes The Amazing Race’s Phil Keoghan, actor and comedian JB Smoove, and Fire Country star Max Thieriot. 


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