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      WWII veteran flag found in thrift shop returned to family

      A veteran's flag that was supposed to be used as a funeral drape in North Carolina never made it.

      It had been missing for 26 years.

      But it turns out, it was found in a Goodwill in Odessa.

      Paula Roberts was a shopping at the Goodwill in Odessa with her daughter when she found an old veteran's flag on the back shelf gathering dust.

      It had a curling strip of masking tape that read "Charlie Gaston, Funeral Drape" and a price tag of $9.99.

      "For us, we know what the flag means," she said. "We know that it's a sign of somebody in the military that they've died and sacrifices that they've given."

      And with enough determination, Roberts got to work to track down who the flag belonged to.

      One thing led to another, and another, and then she discovered that Charlie Gaston served in World War II and graduated from Texas A&M in 1928.

      But how the flag ended up in this Odessa Goodwill on 42nd is a mystery.

      Eventually, Roberts found Gaston's adopted son George...all the way in North Carolina. The family never knew it existed.

      The flag never made it to Gaston's funeral in Hondo, Texas, back in 1988. It had been ordered and shipped, but no one had heard anything about it since.

      George is now in his 70s and battling MS and being taken care of by his sister-in-law.

      It just goes to show that with enough determination and good Internet connection, anything can be found.