CHATHAM CO., GA (WTOC) - There when you need them most, emergency medical workers respond to calls all around Chatham County 24/7.
While their work is frequently the difference between life and death for their patients, they don't always hear 'thank you.'
One ambulance crew did hear those words Friday from one very grateful former patient. Phillip Wingster was near death. He was barely breathing and had a heart rate that was all over the place and foam coming out of his mouth when the EMT team from Chatham Emergency Services showed up.
"That type of call, I think that was the first one that we've had. We've never actually...we've seen it in books. It's actually a rare thing to happen," said EMT Michael Royal.
Royal and Paramedic Rebecca Best remember the call well, recalling the extraordinary steps they had to take to make sure the man didn't die in their care.
"I mean, we talked a lot about that call afterward to kind of help learn and better ourselves with it as well," Royal said.
To the life-saving duo, that call last November ended once they got the man to the hospital. They never expect a thank you for that service, but that's exactly what they got Friday.
"I love them. I love them. Cause myself and other folks, we don't know what would happen to us if they weren't here," said Phillip Wingster, the man they saved late last year.
Without a doubt, Wingster credits the team's fast actions for saving his life. In addition to his words of gratitude, Wingster and his family had plaques made for Best and Royal so they'll always have a reminder that what they do had and will continue to have a positive impact on the community they serve.
"I just wanted to tell them thank you, and I really appreciate what they did, because, like I said, it could've been the other way, easily," Wingster said.
This medical emergency happened back on Nov. 20. Because of the immediate medical care, Wingster was able to leave the hospital and be home for Thanksgiving.