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Six months ago, a group of seniors traveling home to North Carolina from a church retreat in Gatlinburg lost six members in a bus crash on Interstate 40.

In total, eight people died and 14 were hurt after the Front Street Baptist Church bus blew a tire and hit a tractor trailer and SUV.

The crash changed the church family and the crews who rescued the survivors.

"The worst day at work that I can imagine is a geriatric bus crash and that's what we had," said UT Medical Center's director of emergency services, Christian Lawson, a week after the crash.

MORE: Inside the ER the day of the church bus crash

"I've been with Jefferson County for the last 21 years. It's the largest scale accident that we've dealt with since I've been here," said Director of Emergency Medical Services for Jefferson County, Brad Phillips, the day of the crash.

Wednesday, Phillips said he still thinks about the 14 survivors.

Six months later he looks back on that day with pride in his team.

"We were able to serve those people that day as much as possible. And it also brings back a reality of why we do what we do. That's what we're here for," Phillips said.

The accident also brought about change in the way they respond to emergencies.

"This was definitely an event that tested us to our limits and showed us some areas that we don't get to test on a regular basis," Phillips said.

Since then his department has implemented a new system to track patient information during multiple victim situations. The new equipment allows the crews to more easily track where each patient is transported and what time.

"We also reviewed some things with all the responders from each department got their input on what they thought could go better and changed a few of our policies and radio communications and those kind of things so if it ever happens again it will be smoother," he said.

He added he hopes one day to meet with the survivors.

All church bus survivors are recovering at home now.

MORE: Young at Heart: Church bus crash seniors remembered

The senior group's leader and survivor of the bus crash, Marvin Boyer, said the group is still holding choir practice once a week and special activities once a month. He added even when not everyone could attend, the church kept the group going.

"In six months, the Lord has done a marvelous thing," Boyer said about the recovery.

He said many survivors still attend rehab and are suffering from their wounds, but they are "rejoicing" at their ability to overcome.

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