Blog #002 - Israel del Toro
"Israel Del Toro gets an apology after being refused entry".
“Israel Del Toro”, when I see, hear, or read Mr. Del Toro’s name, it always triggers me.
Reading a COVID-19 related headline from July 2, 2020, on the Military Times website, Mr. Del Toro’s name came to my attention.
I was upset by the story because Mr. Del Toro is a true American hero and reading his name again, reminded me of how honored I was with our first official Military order.
As I wrote in my first blog, all mirrors we make have their own unique story. So for this second blog, I like to share this remarkable story with you.
Our first Military Mirror
On March 20, 2012, we received a phone call from Mr. Craig Sard, based at Tyndall Airbase in Florida. Mr. Craig was in charge of a project to rededicate the Airey NCO Academy class 12-3 to Purple Heart Medal recipient TSgt. Israel Del Toro Jr.
Mr. Craig was looking for a 20 inch round mirror, laser engraved with the U.S. Air Force Tactical Air Control Party Crest in it. Surrounding the crest, Mr. Del Toro’s famous words:
“I’m still an NCO in the Air Force. I’ve still got a job to do. Just because I got hurt, if I use that as an excuse not to do my job, I think that’s a cop-out.”
Of course we could do that! To be honest, it was an absolute honor to serve him!
At the same time, the wording made me curious. Because I never heard of Mr. Israel Del Toro, so Mr. Craig explained to me;
“TSgt Del Toro was severely burned on more than 80 percent of his body when an improvised explosive device struck his Humvee. He was on a mission with the Army in Afghanistan, attempting to ambush Afghan insurgents. Google him, and you will find his remarkable story on the internet”.
Now that made me even more curious, so I Googled Mr. Del Toro’s name, and the story blew me away. I was touched, it made me cry, and although I’ve never met TSgt Israel Del Toro in person, he will be in my heart forever.
Even after so many years, I’m proud, honored, and humbled to share this story with you. So I will never forget our first military mirror.
A BIG HUG to all of you and please STAY SAFE,
“The Israel Del Toro classroom” at Tyndall Airbase in Florida. With “our” 20-inch laser engraved mirror with the USAF TACP crest, honoring Mr. Del Toro.