Skip to Content

Bend man reunites WWII soldier, 92, with lost dog tags


A Nebraska World War II veteran has gotten back his military dog tags after losing them on Central Oregon’s High Desert more than 70 years ago.

The Columbus Telegram ( ) reports J.A. Barr , known as Jack, now 92, lost his dog tags in the High Desert of Central Oregon while he attended training camps in preparation to travel to Europe during World War II.

Bill Kaufmann, a retired surveyor from Bend, found the former Belgrade resident’s dog tags about 20 years ago. Previous efforts to find the owner went without success.

Kaufmann renewed his search for the tags ‘ owner earlier this month with the help of Boone County veterans services officer Jacqueline Wells and genealogy enthusiast Cheryl Tesar of DeWitt.

Wells checked veteran records and tracked possible descendants of Barr .

Kaufmann said he was happily surprised that he was able to get the dog tags back to Barr himself, rather than one of his descendants. Barr , who served in the U.S. Army infantry was equally surprised someone had found them and wanted to return them.

“I don’t even know where I lost my dog tags ,” said Barr , who now lives next door to his 69-year-old son in Mannsville, Oklahoma. “They ( tags ) were on a small chain that could break without you realizing it.”

Barr had lived and worked in Alaska for more than 60 years. After his wife died, he moved to Oklahoma to be closer to family.

Kaufmann told NewsChannel 21 Sunday he didn’t do anything special.

“Yeah, I’m just happy the old guy’s got his dog tag,” he said. ‘I talked to him today, and he’s very happy. I’m happy he got it – the original guy got it. That’s all I’m happy about.”

Now that he’s found and even talked to Barr, Kaufmann said he plans to follow up by sending a birthday present when Barr turns 93 in June.


Information from: Columbus Telegram,

Article Topic Follows: News

Jump to comments ↓

KTVZ News Team


KTVZ NewsChannel 21 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content