Injured Fort Bragg paratrooper reunites with unit he deployed with

FORT BRAGG, NC (WTVD) -- More than 250 paratroopers are back on U.S. soil after a nine-month deployment to Afghanistan.

First Lt. Victor Prato is back at Green Ramp to see the brothers he left behind in Afghanistan.

"Being here to see them home is real important to me because I still feel like I'm responsible for the members of my platoon that I was in charge of," Prato said. "I remember the explosion and then I kind of blacked out."

Last November, a truck on a suicide mission with an IED attached rammed into his vehicle. Prato was immediately flown home after suffering several spinal cord injuries.

After Prato endured months of treatment, President Donald Trump awarded him with the Purple Heart at his bedside at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. His devotion and love for his unit have been the driving force of getting to Green Ramp to welcome home the unit he deployed with.

"It'll be good for me to see them and good for them to see me, too," said Prato.

About 300 paratroopers arrived on post Wednesday afternoon. Once the General dismissed the unit to greet their families with a hug, some had hugs for Prato.

"Once you're with those individuals down range; all the training, it's just that strong bond. You can't break it," said Staff Sgt. Lewis Owens.

Prato's mother was visibly moved by the camaraderie. The medic who first administered treatment to her son after the bombing returned from Afghanistan, too.

"I've been looking forward to seeing my family but wanting to see him as well," said Spc. Garrett Young.

It's a day Prato will never forget. He vowed to support and defend the constitution of the United States forever.
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