Jimmy Kimmel and his wife, Molly McNearney, welcomed their second child on April 21st—a son named William “Billy” John Kimmel. Baby Billy is OK, but he does have a heart condition.
In an emotional monologue on his talk show last night (May 1), Jimmy explains the frightening events that unfolded three hours after his son’s birth. The doctors discovered what they at first believed to be a heart murmur, but they soon realized it was something more serious.
“A very attentive nurse at Cedars-Sinai Hospital was checking [Billy] out and heard a murmur in his heart, which is common with newborn babies. But she also noticed he was a bit purple, which is not common, so she asked me to come with her. My wife and I had assumed it’d be nothing.”
While tearing up, Jimmy explained that more and more doctors came to examine Billy (and terrify Jimmy) before they eventually diagnosed him with multiple heart defects. Billy has Tetralogy of Fallot with Pulmonary Atresia, which in short means he has a valve completely blocked and holes in his heart.
After a three-hour surgery, little Billy’s valve was fixed, and he’s doing well. Thank goodness! Jimmy shared this photo of Billy after the surgery—heartbreaking, right?
At the end of his 13-minute speech, where Jimmy tears up multiple times, the new dad thanks everyone involved in saving his son’s life, including congressmen who upped funding to the National Institute of Health by $2 billion, opposing Trump’s suggestion for a $6 billion cut.
“No parent should ever have to decide if they can afford to save their child’s life. It just shouldn’t happen.”
President Obama chimed in on Twitter to support Jimmy’s statement and congratulate him on the new baby. Jimmy’s wife Molly was quick to tweet that “Someone is angling to be Billy’s godfather.” Now that would be a dream godparent!
We’re so happy that baby Billy is doing well and that six days after his surgery, he’s finally home with his family. Billy will need to have future surgeries to correct the defects in his heart—one when he’s a few months old and another when he’s a teenager.
At least Jimmy was still able to find some humour in the situation, saying “Poor kid, not only did he get a bad heart, he got my face.”
Just look at that sweet smile! The couple are also parents to Billy’s big sister, Jane, who was born in July 2014. She does not look particularly thrilled at her new brother in the top photo, but he did buy her Shopkins as a big sister gift, so I’m sure Billy’s growing on her.
After the outpouring of support for the family, Jimmy tweeted his thanks with the above photo.
“Sincere thanks for the outpouring of love & support – Dr. Jane is keeping a close ear on Billy, who is very well – XO.”
So sweet. Watch Jimmy’s emotional monologue below (and make sure you have tissues nearby):