Marine Severely Injured in Afghanistan Receives Adapted Home

Sgt. Gaal woke up from a coma two months after an IED exploded underneath him while on deployment

Marine Sergeant Toran Gaal lost both legs and suffered a severe brain injury when an improvised explosive device detonated while he was deployed to Afghanistan is June 2011.

He woke up from a coma two months later with no memory of being a Marine and thinking he was still in high school. Through physical therapy and help from family and friends, Sgt. Gaal has recovered mentally and made great strides physically as well.

Five years later, Gaal is seeing his new home for the first time.

Homes for Our Troops built the specially-adapted home in Valley Center to meet the needs of Gaal and family, making it easier for him to move around the home and have access from his wheelchair.

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Wider hallways and more easily accessible shelves make Sgt. Gaal's new home more comfortable.

Supporters lined the driveway Saturday to welcome Gaal to his new mortgage-free home. He, his wife Lisa and their daughter will move in soon.

"To have a home that I no longer can't access something, I can't even explain the amount of independence that I feel already and I don't even live here yet,” Gaal said.

The home is the 221st built for veterans through the Homes for Our Troops organization.

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