Tony Yahle Declared Dead, Comes Back to Life After 45 Minutes

08/24/2013 at 11:45 AM EDT

Tony Yahle Declared Dead, Comes Back to Life After 45 Minutes
Tony Yahle
A man, whose heart stopped beating for 45 minutes, credits his faith for being alive and says stunned doctors who declared him dead aren't sure what happened.

The body of diesel mechanic Tony Yahle was being prepared by nurses to be seen by his family Aug. 5 when he began to show signs of life, doctors said. He fully awakened at the hospital five days later.

Yahle, a 37-year-old West Carrollton, Ohio, resident, has been a topic of conversation since, said cardiologist Dr. Raja Nazir.

"In the last 20 years, I've never seen anybody who we have pronounced dead ... and then for him to come back, I've never seen it," Nazir told the Dayton Daily News. "Actually, I've never heard of it."

Yahle says it's a miracle and that doctors couldn't find any defects in his heart. Their last guess was that it was all the result of a possible viral infection, he said.

Yahle's teenage son said he spoke to his father shortly before he revived, the newspaper reported Tuesday.

"I pointed at him and said, 'Dad, you're not going to die today,' " said 18-year-old Lawrence Yahle. "I stood there for a few more seconds. I was about to walk back to comfort the family, and that's when he started showing signs of a heartbeat."

The teen said he "went from hopeless to hope in an instant."

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