Garcia joined the Navy in 1987, and, after three years of active-duty service that included a western Pacific deployment aboard the USS Tarawa (LHA 1), Garcia transferred to the Navy Reserve. In 1990, Garcia began drilling with Commander, Fleet Air, Western Pacific, Grand Prairie, Texas until he transferred to Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron Fifteen, Corpus Christi, Texas in 1995. In 2007, he was mobilized for a six-month deployment to Bahrain. In 2009, he was on leave to spending time with his family at home, when he became dizzy and lost consciousness while brushing his teeth. He had suffered a stroke that resulted in partial paralysis of this left side and routine bouts of vertigo. Garcia credits his wife and his children as his motivation for his recovery. He wants to be an example to them not to ever give up on themselves and to give 100 percent to everything they do.

Photo of Rodolfo Garcia

Rodolfo Garcia

Retired Navy Aviation Boatswain’s Mate Aircraft Handler 1st Class

Age: 47

Current Command/Position: Coach, St. Leo the Great Catholic School

Current Hometown: San Antonio, Texas

Disability: Stroke, diagnosed August 2009