The story of Team HOPE member, retired Army MSG Ray Soto is one of perseverance. ​

As a senior in high school and at the age of 17, Ray decided to join the Army and shipped off to Fort Jackson 2 weeks after graduating. ​

While serving in Afghanistan in 2003, the Humvee that Ray and his team were riding in was hit in an explosion, causing Ray physical injuries and a traumatic brain injury. When he returned home, doctors told him he had only a 10% chance of running again. For Ray, running was always the ultimate form of therapy, so this diagnosis was a devastating blow. But he didn’t give up. To be a positive role model for his son and find his purpose, Ray pushed through the negative thoughts and trained his mind to focus on his passion and not give up.​

Despite the odds, Ray started running again. Since then, he has participated in over 14 marathons, proving his strength and resilience. 

In addition to running with Team HOPE, he has been an avid participant in our Outdoor Adventures program, joining fellow veterans and the HOPE team on hunting trips over the years. We are so inspired by his determination to pursue his passion and proud to be a part of his story.