It was revealed on Tuesday that former Denver Broncos running back Ronnie Hillman is in hospice care with cancer and pneumonia.
A day later, his family announced that the Super Bowl 50 champion was diagnosed with renal medullary carcinoma, a “rare but highly aggressive neoplasm form of cancer that primarily affects young African Americans with sickle cell trait” in August.
Orlando Franklin, who was an offensive tackle with the Broncos from 2011 to 2014, tweeted that Hillman is “not doing well.”
Sadly, Hillman’s family shared similar news.
“Unfortunately treatment has not been successful and our beloved RJ is currently under Hospice Care where he is being kept comfortable and out of pain,” they said in an Instagram post on Hillman’s page.
“As a family, we hope beyond hope, and we have faith that can move mountains. We also understand that God’s will is not always ours; therefore, we as a family subject ourselves to the will of our Almigty [sic] God. We need your prayers, but we also need your understanding and respect for Ronnie and our family’s privacy at this time.”
SUPER BOWL CHAMPION RUNNING BACK IN HOSPICE CARE BATTLING LIVER CANCER, FORMER TEAMMATES SAY
Derek Wolfe, a defensive tackle from the Broncos from 2012 to 2019, added on his radio show that Hillman is suffering from pneumonia and liver cancer.
“It’s not looking good. He has pneumonia, and I’m putting it out there just to send positive vibes his way,” Wolfe said. Another former Bronco during that time, Brandon Stokley, added that it was “awful news.”
“Great football player, great person, great teammate, just an all around great dude,” Wolfe said.
Hillman was the Broncos’ leading rusher in 2015, the same season they won the Super Bowl — he started 10 out of 16 games and ran for 863 yards on 207 carries, seven of them touchdowns, mostly splitting touches with C.J. Anderson.
Hillman, 31, was a third-round pick out of San Diego State in 2012. He spent four seasons with Denver before spending the 2016 season with both the Minnesota Vikings and the then-San Diego Chargers.