Lawrence Bailey on Wednesday returned to the parking lot where three months ago, he died.
Bailey, who suffered a cardiac arrest, was without a pulse for 48 minutes that August morning.
On Wednesday, the 43-year-old returned to the Suquamish Reservation to thank the first responders who saved him.
“I give thanks every day I wake up,” Bailey told a crowd of more than a dozen Suquamish police officers, North Kitsap County Fire & Rescue personnel and representatives from Harrison Medical Center.
Bailey and his family, members of the Nooksack Tribe, sang for the first responders and gave them gifts.
“It’s a good day to be here,” said Bailey, who said since the August event he has lost 70 pounds and no longer smokes or drinks alcohol.
In 2010 North Kitsap County officials started working with the tribe and the hospital to better prepare what the agencies call the “chain of survival.”
First responders say it has helped improve survivability rates in the county.
“Ten years ago our outcomes were pretty dismal,” said North Kitsap Fire & Rescue Firefighter-Paramedic Mark Romero, the lead paramedic on Bailey’s cardiac arrest.
He said the system worked that morning when a citizen called 911 and Suquamish Tribal police officers used the automated external defibrillator until paramedics arrived.
“That [Bailey’s event] would not have been a survivable event,” said Romero.