An inspiring memoir of promises kept, overcoming obstacles, and what it means to sacrifice for others, written by a special ops paratrooper with the Air Force.
When Israel “DT” Del Toro, Jr’s Humvee rolled over a roadside IED in Afghanistan, he had one thought as he lost consciousness: I have to keep the promise I made to my dad. DT was orphaned at the age of fourteen, and on the night before his father died, he repeated the promise his dad required: “Take care of your brothers and sisters.”
Throughout his childhood and into adulthood, DT indeed looked after his younger brother and sisters, even to his own detriment and sacrifice. When he enlisted in the Air Force, progressing in ranks as a skilled marksman calling airstrikes, his promise extended to his brothers and sisters in the Air Force, his fellow soldiers and brothers-in-arms.
When DT was injured in action, he lay in a coma for three months with third-degree burns on 80% of his body. He nearly died three times, and doctors predicted – if he survived – he would forever breathe with a respirator and never walk again. DT pushed through every limit to his full recovery, and he became the first 100% disabled veteran to re-enlist in the Air Force.
DT’s promise to his dad extends now to his fellow wounded warriors throughout the world, as he advocates for awareness and affecting change in public policy for wounded, injured, and ill soldiers. He is a patriot who has kept his promise and changed the world with the spirit of his heart, soul, body, and mind.
A Patriot’s Promise: Protecting My Brothers, Fighting for My Life, and Keeping My Word by Senior Master Sergeant (Ret.) Israel “DT” Del Toro Jr.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Such inspiration! I’d recommend to everyone.
I enjoyed as an audiobook narrated by Roger Wayne who is excellent, perfect pacing, clarity, and Spanish, highly recommend.
Has been so lovely to read on this celebratory, Day of Independence, U.S.A.’s birthday, 4th of July.
I love DT’s story. I will say I did cry, beginning, middle, and end. Hearing more of the entirety of service, battle injury, camaraderie, love story, and family. I hadn’t heard to full detail completely so to read more in book form was very encouraging.
The setting up of atmosphere, culture, persons, situational encounters, and everything in-between from military service, to duties, all the way to expert marksmanship and paratrooper, to family dynamics and complexities. Highlighting both highs and lows, obstacles and all, celebrations in spite of favorable, unfavorable circumstances, worst of tragedies, the endurance to keep pressing on.
A beautiful family of man, wife, and child. Marital bliss, integrity, test of strength and commitment
loyalty, generational impact, and keeping promise.
Inhalation and cutaneous burns, complications, impressive recovery of 80% with 3rd degree burns with such grim prognosis. Enduring physical, mental, and emotional pain. Including deepest pain in other circumstances. The difficulty in decision-making, then barriers, 100% disability, then onto re-enlistment.
Turned into compelling voice and advocacy.
With a wonderfully dedicated piece for even the less visible wounds of war.
Struggles of proper accommodation for disabilities, and notably as seen through COVID-19 pandemic.
The piece about healing that comes with sharing story.
I loved the outlook of enthusiasm and opportunity, taking on the chance to making something easier for someone else, to not make it harder, to be someone’s angel.
And fun humor mixed in as well, hilarious sense of humor actually, I laughed so hard.
The writing was well-done. Excellent storytelling. Super engaging. Organized well chronologically, with some recollection, intrigue, and surprises as told along the way.
The descriptions were transportive. From Chicago to Mexico, to active service mission in Afghanistan, to the long road of recovery in hospital, rehabilitation, and competitive sports. People as characterized who have crossed paths along the way.
Enjoyed the integration of Spanish, and the writing style with interpretation of how it was formatted into the story.
I also appreciated inclusion from wife’s perspective and highlighting her ways in which she shined. Her continued support and hope, even through her own life perspective and journey, the hardships, still showing grace and standing by in love. Even the tidbits here and there of memories of community and the picturesque of plaza, changes brought about by military life, then of anticipation of the unknown. Even hair dye style mishaps, cuisine, and certain aspects of discipline. All the relatable and familial culture.
I look forward to more.
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