Veteran hopes to return army nurse's memorabilia to family

Posted at 5:02 PM, Nov 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-09 19:13:06-05

EUFAULA, Okla. -- After buying a chest at a flea market, one Eufaula woman was shocked to find what was inside.

Dog tags, letters, and photos all illustrate the life of an army nurse from Oklahoma. It was then she decided to connect the memorabilia with another veteran, with the goal of eventually bringing history home.

"I don't feel it should just be thrown away and tucked away… it's history. Like I said, it's history," Sheila Martin said.

From army documentation to letters, it paints a picture of Margaret Watlington's life: a woman born in 1912 whose last known residence was in Oklahoma City.

Korea veteran Pete Perieda was happy to take on the paperwork himself, since he currently has World War II documents of his own father.

"We're lucky to still have that in the family. To see this lost and turned up… this ended up being in a storage locker, this cabinet was, and forgotten about," Perieda said.

What struck Perieda most was notes from loved ones, including a biography of Watlington's history.

"It tells about her whole life while she was in the military. When she was getting ready to go to Hawaii… well this was on December 7th, 1941," he said.

Perieda is not sure if this woman has passed, but he wants to carry on her legacy in the spirit of Veteran's Day.

"I think veterans deserve a lot of things. This lady was a veteran, and she deserves to have this back with her family," he said.

If you recognize Watlington or have a connection to her family, please contact our newsroom at

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