Some stories are almost too extreme to believe, but they are as real as can be. In 2002 Maria Torres was in search of a better life and boarded a train headed to the U.S. This was not just any train, This train is referred to locals as La Bestia (The Beast). It is a freight train transporting goods from the border of Mexico and Guatemala to the border of the United States. Each year, a half-million desperate Latin Americans risk their lives to hop on the roof of this train in hopes of reaching the States. They ride atop the railcars with no protection and vulnerability to the environment and lack of resources. Maria was determined, but so was her perpetrator.

About one week into her travels, a thug began harassing her about getting food for him. Since supplies were limited and she was just trying to survive, she did not give in to his antics. He began calling her names and asked if she was getting off the train. When she replied, “No”, the man approached her and pushed her, ripping her dress as she fell backwards. Maria had nothing to hold on to and fell between the rail cars. Unable to move, the final three rail cars passed over her, immediately severing her left leg.

There were some soldiers nearby who came to her assistance. They first told her to stand up , not realizing this trauma that had just taken place, but when Maria looked down she saw that her leg was gone. Shocked that she could not stand or move, the soldiers took her to the hospital. She was held in the hospital and consulate for treatment. After 3 months, she returned to Honduras and was reunited with her family. Even though she was never the same after the accident, not being able to walk, work, and experiencing horrible pain, Maria chooses to be grateful.

“I thank God because I’m here in Honduras, back again with my children. Because my God always does things with a purpose, like reuniting. I wouldn’t like to remember what I went through. Thank God I’m back…and because I know this foundation will give me a prosthesis.”

Though she previously obtained a commercial prosthesis, the pylon broke, and she was unable to pay to have it repaired. Before Hope To Walk, she was without a prosthetic leg for 5 months and did not believe she could ever walk again. But now, at 55 years old, Maria Torres has restored hope for her future. Thanks to your generous donation, she has the peace of a permanent prosthetic leg from Hope To Walk which will continue assisting her. It is only through collaboration of willing hearts that we are able to continue in this mission. On behalf of Maria, her family, and Hope to Walk, we thank you for playing a part in providing hope to the hopeless. We pray that our ministry of building legs would ultimately inspire others to keep walking in the light of Jesus Christ. Thank you for supporting Hope to Walk, and we pray that Maria’s story has blessed just as you have blessed her!