Ep 28 MSgt Israel Del Toro – A Hero’s Lesson Of Survival and Inspiration

In this episode, Senior Master Sergeant Israel Del Toro joined the Doc and the Block podcast to discuss his upbringing and how he overcame suffering burns on over 80 percent of his body while serving in Afghanistan.

Del Toro grew up on the south side of Chicago. When he was 12, his father died of a heart attack. Two years later, when he was 14, his mother was killed by a drunk driver. As the oldest of four children, Del Toro had to take care and provide for his siblings. The responsibility forced him to leave college early, despite having a full academic scholarship. 

In 1997, Del Toro decided to join the Air Force, after his siblings were old enough to take care of themselves. While serving as a Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan in 2005, his Humvee rolled over an IED which left him with severe burns on over 80 percent of his body, the loss of one hand and most of the fingers on his other hand. Del Toro remained in a coma for about three months, and his doctors believed he had less than a 20 percent chance of survival.

After a four-year battle to recover from his injuries, which included many surgeries and vigorous physical therapy, Del Toro became the first 100 percent disabled airman to reenlist in the Air Force. 

During the podcast, Del Toro discusses his life and his new book “A Patriot’s Promise,” which details the promise he made to his dad the night before his death to “take care of your brothers and sisters,” and the difficulties he faced in his work to fulfill that promise.

MSgt Israel Del Toro – A Hero’s Lesson Of Survival and Inspiration

D&B Staff

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