Local church searching for veteran in vintage photograph

LAREDO, TX (KGNS) - Veterans Day is a time to remember and thank those that have answered the call of duty. This is a perfect time to have a conversation with relatives who served and protected our way of life.

That can include going over pictures and letters of loved ones, pictures like the one found at a local church, which now is desperately trying to find its rightful owners.

The identity of the World War II veteran photographed is not known for sure, but there are some clues that could help bring that piece of history back to his loved ones.

"We all have memories from when we served, it's pictures, memories, letters, and memorabilia that we keep in our picture albums,” said Greg Moore, a Trustee of First United Methodist Church. “After we are dead and gone, people can research our history."

It's more than tradition for veteran Greg Moore, whose family has a long history in the military that extends to the Revolutionary and Civil War, just to name a few.

"Of course I served two terms in Vietnam, and I've got a nephew serving in the navy now."

Moore says it is through memorabilia that we can get in touch with those that came before us.

"It's history, it's artifacts, it's something that we all have history, if we go through ancestry, where we go back."

Which is why he, along with others at the first United Methodist Church, were astonished at what fell out of a donated empty photo album.

"In our recent rummage sale we found an envelope that contained a picture of a Hispanic gentleman. Somebody just donated it by mistake."

Although not a lot is known about the man in this picture there are several clues as to whom this veteran might be.

"It was evident that he served from his uniform stuff that he served in World War II. I don't know if he was drafted or he volunteered."

Examining the photo further, we find the name Alvaro Lopez is written in the back. Along with the picture, a Spanish newspaper article details an upcoming wedding between Rosa Maria and Alvaro in September, but the year is unknown.

"We don't know anything about the gentleman,” Moore says, but what we do know is that he fought for our country and freedom.

"The American military, we go all over the world and we fight wars, and they say they're useless wars but they're not.”

He says hopefully, this veteran's family can soon be reunited with this extraordinary and everlasting piece of history.

"One day in the future that family can hold up his picture and say he served."

The rummage where these items were found is done by the first United Methodist Church around this time every year.

If you are or know the family of the veteran in the picture, you can contact us at 727-8888 or email us at news8team@kgns.Tv