"I am home" - Wounded warrior completes cross-country journey - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

"I am home" - Wounded warrior completes cross-country journey

Posted: Updated:

SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Wounded Marine Veteran Sgt. Toran Gaal returned to San Diego, after an inspiring cross-country journey.

He hand-cycled across the United States to raise money and awareness for wounded warriors.

Former Marine Sgt. Toran Gaal flew home from Washington D.C., where his family went to meet him at the finish line.

He was exhausted but said the Ride Across America has taught him that no matter what challenges you face in your life you don't have to give up.

Former Marine Sgt. Toran Gaal is home from a ride of a life time.

"I am home," he said.

Wounded warrior, Sgt. Gaal left San Diego 63 days ago for a Ride across America.

"It showed a perseverance in me I did not think I had," he said.

Gaal, who lost both legs during a tour in Afghanistan in 2011, rode his hand cycle 3,200 miles across the United States, with his support driver.

His support driver is also a wounded Marine. Marine Sgt. Brain Riley and Sgt. Gaal raised money for the Semper Fi Fun and created awareness for adaptive sports.

"It was a humbling experience to know that I'm glad I didn't quit. What example would I be showing by myself what example to show society, if I was to quit," said Gaal.

Both Sgt. Gaal and Sgt. Riley endured mountains, rain and 100-degree heat. There were days Gaal just wanted to give up.

"Climbing over the Rockies, and exhausted as I was going to be, the fact that I was able to do it. I cried. I didn't think I would make it," said Gaal.

He thought about his family, grandparents and the troops who paid the ultimate sacrifice. He also thought about the kind people he met along the way and veterans who drove hundreds of miles to greet him at a stop.

"To see the support along the way, it was unexpected. I didn't know what to expect. To see America in a different light," he said.

On Sunday Gaal arrived in Arlington where he paid tribute to the fallen at the National Cemetery.

He honored the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice riding across America in their honor.

"You think about all the experiences all the amazing individuals that we saw across the country I am extremely grateful that I did it and I think it helped me grow as an individual," he said.

Gaal's Ride Across America raised nearly $50,000 for the Semper Fi Fund.

Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 Midwest Television, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.