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U.S. Marine Corps Corporal

Marco's Story

Marco De La Rosa’s application letter to Wheelchairs for Warriors:


“I am a T4-T5 para, which means I am in a wheelchair and paralyzed from under the nipple area down. I was hurt on Nov 15, 1993 three days after my 23rd birthday and four days after the Marine Corps birthday. I was shot stopping a robbery at a video store in Moreno Valley, California. I walked in and reacted. I didn’t see one of the suspects and he shot me from behind and that was it for me. From my injury, I’ve been through a lot, PTSD, divorce, anger and depression; I mean the kind of depression where you stare out the window and have music playing super high just to drown out everything. When I did rehab at the VA in San Diego, I was told I would be there six months, but I got out in four! I pushed myself so hard; it wasn’t until the second year of my injury when it hit me... I am a disabled person and no matter how hard I push myself I will never walk again. This realization began years of drinking and pushing people away. I bounced from city to city trying to find a place to settle. I found San Antonio and got involved with sports at the local VA where I discovered pistol shooting. I got very good at it and was told I should compete at the 2015 National Wheelchair Games in Dallas. Surprisingly, I beat everyone by 100 points and was invited to compete again in April of 2016 in Poland. I self-funded my trip, I scored a silver medal and I came home happy! I was even able to compete in the 2016 Paralympics in Rio and am making my way to compete in Tokyo for the 2020 Paralympics. However, my wheelchair is not competition compliant and the VA will not provide me with a ‘sport’ chair. I am hoping my story will motivate you to provide me with a wheelchair that will help me continue to live out my dreams.”


Wheelchairs for Warriors answered with a resounding “YES, we will provide you with a custom sport chair!” And why not? Why not keep them engaged in a mission? Why not serve the men and women, in whatever capacity THEY deem necessary to live strong and ROLL STRONG? Ask yourself, WHY NOT? #jointhemission #rollingstrong


Since 2006, De La Rosa has been helping other disabled veterans and motivating them with one of his biggest supporters, Mary Virginia Pittman-Waller, president of MVP’s Welcome Home Wounded Warrior Initiative who says that De La Rosa is “one of the finest human beings you can meet.”

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