San Antonio couple recovering from Beirut blast fundraising to provide ambulances for Lebanese community

The San Antonio couple who captured the Beirut blast is raising money to buy ambulances

SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio resident Imad Khalil and his wife, Lina, were in their condo right across the Beirut port where a massive explosion happened on Aug. 4.

“I flew about eight, nine feet in the air. I think I went through the glass and I landed on the floor just drenched with blood,” Khalil said.

The couple was severely injured.

“All my legs were pretty cut, pretty bad -- my stomach, my arm, my eye,” Khalil said.

His wife was able to go down the building to get help.

“She went down 11 stories, and, you know, glass and debris all over the hallways,” Khalil said.

She ran into a friend that helped them.

PHOTOS: Beirut explosion leaves behind unspeakable damage

Khalil said a group of men used one of the condo doors as a stretcher to bring him down. Once downstairs, they stopped an ambulance, and Khalil got in.

“There’s this other lady next to me here, and she was bleeding and injured. And then there’s this guy also in front of me who is -- I’m really not sure if he’s alive or dead,” Khalil said.

Khalil said he and his wife underwent surgery after the blast.

“I lost some hearing, about 40% of my hearing, plus my balance. So I’m doing physical therapy for that too,” Khalil said.

As the couple recovers, they also want to help the community in Beirut. They are raising money to buy ambulances.

Imad said the experience in the ambulance allowed him to see how important emergency services are.

“I really believe that, you know, God left me here for a reason. And I really want to help. I have a mission in life to help them in Lebanon,” Khalil said.

The couple visits Beirut often. Khalil said he will ship the ambulances from the U.S. to Beirut and wants to be there personally to deliver them.

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