Airman shares experiences, motivation for surviving combat injuries

  • Published
  • By Lori A. Bultman
  • 25th Air Force

The 25th Air Force Guest Speaker Program welcomed Senior Master Sgt. Israel Del Toro on May 15, 2018. Del Toro spoke to Airmen about his life experiences, career and what motivated him to survive after being injured in combat.


In 2005, Del Toro was on deployment in Afghanistan when his Humvee rolled over a buried landmine and exploded. He suffered third degree burns on more than 80 percent of his body and both of his hands were seriously damaged. Doctors gave him a 15 percent chance of survival, but Del Toro woke up from a three-month coma more determined to survive than ever. He was the first ever 100 percent combat disabled Air Force technician to re-enlist, and he continues to serve his country as a member of the U.S. Air Force “Wings of Blue” parachute team.