Among dramatic displays of marine rescues, house fire safety and gas attacks at Kiama's Emergency Services Expo on Saturday, three heart attack survivors had an emotional reunion with the paramedics who gave them their second chance at life.
Alan Hunt, 56, Michelle Quinn, 44, and Phil Spry, 53, were presented with Cardiac Arrest Survivor awards to recognise their survival of out-of-hospital heart attacks, which have a survival rate of just 3 per cent.
The meeting was particularly emotional for Mr Hunt, from Campbelltown, whose grandchild had just been born when he had a heart attack while holidaying in Kiama in February.
He credits ambulance officers Kelvin Milne and Anthony Hillier for saving his life.
"All I remember was I was feeling really crook," Mr Hunt said.
"Next thing I knew, I woke up and there was a paramedic on top of me and he said, 'Welcome back'.
"He explained to me that I just had a cardiac arrest. They had to defibrillate me. That gave me a real shock. It put the wind up me."
The father of three said the two paramedics not only saved him but followed up with checks while he was in Wollongong hospital.
"What they've done, it was for a very, very grateful person," he said. "Not just for me, but for my whole family. I get emotional when I think about it."
Mr Milne said, "What really touched me about Alan was that he'd just had a grandchild.
"I said, 'Mate, this is your opportunity; give your grandchild a hug; give your wife a hug'.
"It's basically a second chance at life. It's about renewing things with your family, your kids, your friends; doing things that count and which matter the most."