The Pegula family has largely remained quiet and private since revealing in June that Kim Pegula, the co-owner of the Bills, was rehabilitating from what was only described as a “health issue.” Now Jessica Pegula, the tennis star and daughter of Terry and Kim Pegula, has opened up about what her family has gone through.
Jessica Pegula wrote in The Players Tribune that her mom went into cardiac arrest at the family home, that her sister had to perform CPR just to keep her alive until paramedics arrived, and that Kim Pegula has made progress but is still dealing with substantial health concerns.
“Today, my mom is still in recovery and although it is the same answer every time someone asks me, it is true, she is improving every day,” Jessica Pegula wrote. “She is dealing with significant expressive aphasia and significant memory issues. She can read, write, and understand pretty well, but she has trouble finding the words to respond. It is hard to deal with and it takes a lot of patience to communicate with her, but I thank God every day that we can still communicate with her at all. The doctors continue to be blown away by her recovery, considering where she started, and her determination is the driving force of that.”
Jessica Pegula says that seeing the Bills’ medical staff save the life of Damar Hamlin after he went into cardiac arrest on the field was inspiring.
“Going into the 2023 Australian Open, I decided to wear the number 3 patch to honor Damar Hamlin,” she wrote. “Ironically, yes, I was ranked No. 3 in the world. However, it didn’t feel like it was just for him, it felt like it was for my mom as well. To see the attention it garnered in Australia, across the world, in a different country, just reminded me why I love sports and the beauty of coming together. Some of my close friends who know every detail of what has happened tell me, “I don’t know how you have made it through the year, let alone finished No. 3 in the world.” I just say I have no freaking clue. I guess one thing I learned from the past year is it can be a great year, and a bad year, both can be true.”
Jessica wrote that she and her family have appreciated the respect for their privacy while Kim Pegula continues through a hard road ahead.