He said it was all thanks to the nurses who cared for him, and he wanted to properly thank them.
At first it was a bit awkward.
"Do you guys remember me at all?" said Koraan Gatson, a former patient.
"No," the nurses said.
WATCH THE FULL VIDEO OF THE TOUCHING REUNION BELOW
That's because Gatson was just a baby the last time they saw him.
"I was born here 19 years ago, and a lot of you guys took care of me for about three months," Gatson said.
The reunion was captured only by Eyewitness News in the neonatal intensive care unit at Brookdale Hospital.
This was the first time Gatson, now a Navy medic, has been back since he was an infant.
The 19-year-old wanted to thank the team who took such good care of him, so he did, in his full uniform. He presented the nurses with flowers and a plaque.
"It didn't hit me until I walked in that all of these people took part in me essentially staying alive," Gatson said.
After looking at his baby album, it all came rushing back.
Cheryl Coard was one of his nurses.
"It made me feel happy. Any time out babies come back, there's a joy in your heart," Coard said. "It does give you a feeling that what you're doing is worthwhile."
At birth, Gatson weighed just 2 pounds, 5 ounces, and spent three months in the NICU.
"He was born with a subdural hematoma bleeding on the brain, and it was something that you told yourself, my God if you can make this baby survive, that's all I want," said Nicole Francois, Gatson's mother.
She got that and so much more.