Relatives say they were driving Alaniz to the hospital on May 6, 2011, when he suddenly became unresponsive.
When they called 911, their cell phone signal failed.
With no way to call an ambulance and no time to make it to a hospital, they reacted quickly and pulled into Houston Fire Department's Station 61 in southeast Houston.
Paramedics and EMTs rushed to Alaniz and worked to resuscitate him.
Officials said he regained a pulse and was transported to the hospital, but he later died.
Alaniz's family wanted to show their appreciation to the crews who worked so diligently tried to help in his time of need.
On the one-year anniversary of his death, they attended Mass as a family and then delivered lunch to Station 61 and spent time with the HFD members there.
Alaniz was an energetic community leader, active in LULAC and various church organizations. His children said they felt their Dad would want them to say "thank you."