The Burn Flight Team out of the Army's Institute of Surgical Research used life-saving measures to help Navy EOD Tech Chief Petty Officer Kenton Stacy.
Stacy was injured in an IED blast while working at a medical facility in Syria.
Channel 6 spoke exclusively with a member of that team in San Antonio on Friday.
"(Stacy) was probably on the top ten worst injuries I've seen in my career," said Captain Sabas Salgado, critical care nurse and flight member.
Salgado was one of 11 members of the team who traveled to Baghdad to help Stacy back in November.
"The patient was so involved critically that we needed multiple teams to be able to move him," Salgado said.
Salgado and his teammates deployed to Iraq within two hours of getting the call.
"We didn't hesitate, we were ready," Salgado said.
The Burn Flight Team grabbed all of the equipment they would need. Salgado estimated the team brought about 13-14 Pelican cases for the mission. Once the team arrived, Salgado and his team did a pulmonary bypass on Kenton -- a surgery lasting about two hours. The bypass machine allows the lungs to rest while the machine breathes for the patient, and Stacy was on it for 31 hours until he reached U.S. soil.
"It's kind of like a dialysis machine, but for the lungs," Salgado said.
It was an historic surgery in aviation history because it marked the first time the Burn Flight Team did not use blood thinner because of Stacy's head trauma from the blast.
"We needed at least two operators at the same time to monitor him, the machine and all the other drips he was getting," Salgado said.
Two-and-a-half months later, Kenton is improving.
"For me, that puts a smile on my face that we got the job done, we got him home to see his family and that was the goal," the nurse said.
But it's a long road ahead for Kenton and his family. His wife, Lindsey, stays by his side every day and asks the community for prayers.
"Just praying for his anxiety, for him to get off the ventilator, praying also for swelling to go down in his spine," Lindsey said.
Kenton is one of more than 1,000 patients the Burn Flight Team brought home since 2003, one part of the 9,000 missions completed since 1951.
The Stacy family is spreading the #StacyStrong message with t-shirts and hats. The proceeds go straight to the Stacy family. You can check it out here.