Shirley Muniz & Malyk Grant

Period 5

Mrs.Barnard-US History

Jesus Lopez Jr.

Army

3 years in service

Jesus Lopez Jr.

        Jesus Lopez Jr. was born on April 14,1934. As a teenager Lopez was into gang banging.

While he was in high school he felt that his life was going in the wrong direction. He decided to

join the military and serve our country.

        Lopez served during the Korean War. He thought this would help him escape the

 troubles of being a gang banger. Being seventeen Lopez needed his parents to sign papers to

allow him to serve. At that he began basic training. He was very excited to start a new life. He felt

that basic training was were he became a man. “ The training was extremely difficult but it

changed me” said Lopez. It was challenging at first . Having to face discrimination made him

 grow into the man he aspired to be. In training he learned to hold grenades and shoot guns. It

was an experience Lopez won't forget. Lopez was deployed June 25,1951. While stationed in

Korea he did not stay in touch with his family because he was occupied with the war. He wrote

 letter once in a while but did not consistently write to them. “ We didn't have computers, all we

had were letters “ said Lopez.

        Memories from the war only brought pain for Lopez. The only way to escape the bad

memories was to drink. Lopez soon enough became an alcoholic due to the consumption of

so much alcohol. He drank every chance he got, when he would visit at home but especially with

his friends during war. For over six years, he drank excessively but figured out it was time to

 change. He needed to straighten his life out again. Lopez then started to attend AA meeting for a

better life.

        Lopez saw getting out of service could be a fresh start. He used his GI Bill to finish high

 school and college. He earned his high school diploma and gained trade tech education, putting

his time in service behind him . Lopez lost contact with many of his friends he served with and

 never attended reunions. It would only bring back the bad memories that the war brought upon

him. When he came back from Korea, Lopez wished he could've been thanked for his service.

He knew that this was the past and needed to move forward. Lopez say “ Education is

everything so live it up and enjoy that you have this opportunity.”

Lopez never had an opportunity to talk about his memories from the war. When an

 opportunity arose he had took advantage. Although it was very hard bringing those memories

back, he shared them. For Lopez, his dog tags are important to him. He carries the dog tags to

keep his fallen friends close to him and have somthing from the war at all times. Lopez would not

want to join the service again. “I wouldn't go back and I  recommend that everyone get their

 education .” Lopez put his life back on track and remarried. Lopez also has children. Lopez lives

in Arizona and now spends his life traveling and being with his family.

        This Korean veteran deserves all the thanks he didn't get because he risked his own life

to save our country and give people the freedom they have now. Lopez is an inspiration for the

bravery and dedication he had during the war, he will always carry a legacy with him. That is

 

something everyone should remember when hearing about Lopez and should thank him for his

service. Jesus Lopez Jr.  is a Korean War Hero that will always be recognized for his bravery .