STAMFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork) – Thousands are expected to gather in Stamford on Saturday for a CPR training event.

The hope is to break the Guinness World Record of 7,909 people set in Singapore last year.

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At the age of 54, Chris Mirra suffered two near fatal heart attacks. He survived both because people around him were trained in CPR. They recognized the symptoms and they didn’t hesitate to act.

“You can’t be afraid to act. You have to just know that whatever you’re doing is going to benefit the person to some extent, at least until more qualified people can get there,” he told WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau.

“When somebody has an arrest, there’s that uncertainty in your mind of ‘Can I do this?’ and if you see 10,000 other people doing it around you, you’re going to be much more likely to say ‘You know what, I can do this. I know I have the support. I know I can pull this off,'” said event organizer and cardiologist Dr. Thomas Nero.

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“If the people immediately around me were not trained in CPR, I wouldn’t be here. There’s no question that I wouldn’t be here,” he said.

Chris said that one of the people who stepped in to save his life after the first heart attack was his wife, who had recently taken a CPR refresher.

He said friends trained in CPR revived him the second time.

Chris, a physically fit high school coach, said you can bet his whole family will be at the CPR training event on Saturday.

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