A retired Chattanooga Fire Department Captain recognized his former co-workers for saving his life. Back in July, David Thompson Sr. had a heart attack and Station 13 arrived on the scene.

Channel 3 spoke with Mr. Thompson and he says he's lucky to be a survivor in this situation. He's responded to similar calls himself and knows not many patients have survived.

He is very grateful to all the first responders on that day.

Thompson told us when speaking of the day he suffered the heart attack, "For lack of better terminology, I fell over dead."

On the morning of July 16th, David Thompson senior suffered a heart attack and was not breathing when the first responders arrived to his office. His former co-workers at Station 13 of the Chattanooga Fire Department arrived on the scene and immediately began to help.

Josh Allds, a firefighter on the scene said, "He was not in a good place. We ended up having to react immediately and take over CPR and ultimately resuscitate him by using the AED and getting him back."

Thompson had responded to this type of call many times before, but he never imagined he would be the one who needed to be brought back to life.

"This is the first time I was on the other side and working it as the patient-- there's just nothing to compare to it,” Thompson told us.

His perspective has changed now that he's been on the other side. He has a better understanding of the impact first responders have.

"It's easier to know what really happens and what you do really means something,” said Thompson.

Thompson is beyond grateful for what Station 13 did that day. He claims, "I owe my life. I would not be here if it hadn't been for 13."

He decided to throw them a party. He chose to serve the responders steak and potatoes to let them know he appreciates what they do.

"You know everybody appreciates what you do, but you don't often get that pat on the back for a job well done, and being on both sides now I wanted to make sure they got some recognition,” Thompson said.

The Thompson family has an incredibly strong legacy within the Chattanooga Fire Department.

Three of his sons work with the CFD and his oldest son was on scene that day in July.