In 2004, while serving in Iraq as a United States Marine, Visnu Gonzalez became a quadriplegic after suffering sniper wounds in his spine during his last tour.
Yet despite the challenges he knew he might face, Gonzalez said he “always knew I’d become a father.”
According to “Good Morning America,” Gonzalez first enlisted in the military immediately following the terrorist attacks on 9/11—telling GMA that he “was signing the papers the same day that the towers went down.”
In 2010, six years after suffering his injuries, Gonzalez met the woman who would eventually become his wife while on vacation in the Dominican Republic.
After marrying three years later in 2013, the couple started trying to grow their family. Both Gonzalez and his wife, Sahily Machado, faced infertility issues.
However, the couple never gave up, and all their doubts became just vivid memories when Gonzalez eventually met with a doctor in New York City, Tomer Singer.
According to “GMA,” Singer is the vice chair and OB/GYN at Lenox Hill Hospital. His father was also a soldier who was paralyzed in battle, meaning Singer was conceived through artificial insemination back in the 1960s:
“I remember the day we met and they came to my office. It was a very emotional day for the couple and myself.”
“Visnu’s injury was very similar to my father’s injury.”
And because of that, Gonzalez said he “knew when he said his Dad was in a wheelchair that he was the doctor.”
As “Good Morning America” reports, with the help of Singer, Gonzalez and Machado’s hopes turned into reality when they welcomed their first child together after three years of treatments.
Singer says he’ll “always remember” Machado “dropping the phone and crying.” Machado added:
“I’ll never forget the words he tell me, ‘Mazel Tov! You’re pregnant!”
The couple welcomed a baby girl named Lia Valentina on December 28, 2018.
Gonzalez said of their little miracle:
“When you see that baby coming out … it’s wonderful, especially when you’re … when you’ve been trying for so long.
It’s pure joy. I mean when you hold her, and, you know, you’re a dad … you start your promises. I’m gonna protect you. You’re gonna have whatever you need,’ and this and that.”
The birth of his daughter was “a life-changing event” for both of them, and they wouldn’t change a thing.