The story below was sent to Elk Grove Laguna Forums by the Lopez family. They wanted to share their son’s story. It’s a story that many families share every day. Every day 22 Veterans take their own lives.
Carlos S Lopez, Jr. young War Veteran Passed Away due to PTSD
Carlos Lopez Jr a Laguna Creek High School graduate and Iraq and Afghanistan War Veteran passed away of self-inflected wounds on June 24th, 2018 in his apartment located in downtown Los Angeles.
Carlos Jr. who lived in Elk Grove joined the U.S. Army in 2002, 6 months before the Iraq –Operations Freedom Conflict and was one of the first solders to land in Iraq, which included battles in Bagdad, Nagoff, and Fallousa and later served in Kuwait as a civilian Contractor protecting our U.S. Army troops and then called to serve a tour of duty in Afghanistan. Carlos Jr. served over 37 months in a severe combat environment.
His parents Carlos and Juanita Lopez stated when returning home from Iraq and Afghanistan he was not the same person, very aggressive, yet loving to his family and spoke highly of his “Battle Buddies” in the military. Although Carlos Jr. experienced great military combat leading to great stress from his military experience in the mid-east he was extremely proud of his military service to our country and served with great honor. Essentially Carlos Jr. joined the U.S. Army for 2 years but served nearly 5 years of active duty, and 3 tours of duty nearly all his military service in active combat zones
After his return from Afghanistan his 3rd tour of duty he attended Consumes Community College and majored in Acting and Theater. Carlos Jr. loved the theater. This allowed him to play military roles and express his deepest thoughts and feeling while acting on stage. Once completed he left for Los Angeles where he attended Moorpark Community College in, Simi Valley and a graduate Los Angeles Film School majoring in production. Carlos Jr. became both an Actor and Film Production Producer.
In a short span of 6 years Carlos Jr. made his mark in Hollywood playing roles in movies and television including Winter Soldier, Foot Clan Solder on Teenage Ninja Turtles, I Carly, and TV Operation Repo and produced some short films “battle buddies” and PTSD “An American Tragedy” where he plays Victor Martinez, who resembles a true-life story of a veteran returning from Iraq suffering from severe Post Traumatic Stress. The Lopez family plans to premier his movie live at Sacramento Crest Theater soon. The movie written and produced by Carlos Jr. won the Best Picture Award for Moorpark film School and the family plans to premier the movie to the public.
Carlos Jr. served his county honorably as have “thousands” of Veterans and his own words, he was a “Soldier of God.” A bible was found near him when he passed.
He is survived by his loving parents Carlos and Juanita Lopez and his sisters Nadia, Jennie and his brother Rocky who currently serves in the U.S. Marine Corp.