09/12/2014 10:35 EDT | Updated 11/12/2014 05:59 EST

Ebola crisis: Nursing student returns from 'terrifying' aid trip

A 23-year-old nursing student's trip to Liberia to try and help contain the spread of Ebola has left him haunted by the memories and compelled to return.

"It was absolutely terrifying," Ian MacKay told CBC's Chris Brown. "I've never feared for my life as much as I did in Liberia."

He visited the country with a Christian aid group, Samaritan's Purse, and quickly realized how "horrible" the illness is.

Less than three weeks into his trip, two Americans working at the same clinic — Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol — contracted Ebola. This meant MacKay was also at risk.

"Knowing that I had been exposed to the virus … and it was a bloody, painful death was the scariest part of it all," he said.

MacKay donated two pints of blood to help Writebol.

He was quarantined in Canada for the past month but has since been deemed virus free.

Despite that experience, MacKay feels compelled to return to Liberia.

Click on the video above to watch MacKay's story.