Veteran who was in a coma for a month thanks doctors for survival

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VALLEY STREAM -

A Long Island Army veteran who spent about a month in a coma thanked doctors Friday for his survival.

Michael Mendez suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and had organ failure due to alcoholism. He was put on life support and required a respirator when he got to Long Island Jewish hospital in Valley Stream last summer.

Doctors said there was little hope for survival, but they did see small signs of hope.

After lying in a coma for 31 days, doctors say Mendez opened his eyes and, to their amazement, made a rapid recovery. He walked out of the hospital a few days after his 46th birthday.

Mendez believes it was a medical miracle and says he's thankful to the hospital staff for a second chance at life.

Mendez says he's using the second chance to work with agencies that help people struggling with addiction.

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