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First responders reunite with survivors at JFK Medical Center

Posted at 6:15 PM, Nov 29, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-30 04:15:30-05

Dozens of people gathered at JFK Medical Center to honor first responders, Wednesday.

The event was held by the hospital to bring awareness to sudden cardiac arrest. According to the Institute of Medicine, only 11 percent of people survive cardiac arrest.

The chance of survival is better if a first responder is nearby. The 11 survivors at the event were able to thank the people who helped save them in person.

First responders from 15 different posts and survivors were treated to a meal and a special presentation by the hospital.

Many survivors and their families became emotional when seeing the people who helped save them. Among them, Brian Smith.

In August, Smith was out jogging when he collapsed. An off-duty paramedic saw him and performed CPR.

"They're the people that saved my life," Smith told WPTV. "I mean, if it weren't for them calling 911 and keeping the blood flowing to my brain and through my body, I don't know if I would be here today."