Stolen truck with dog tags of fallen Visalia soldier recovered in Delano

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Things haven't gotten much easier for Sgt. Todd Vaughan's family after he was killed in a car accident in Germany. Someone stole their truck with Todd's dog tags inside, but police managed to recover both. (KFSN)

Todd Vaughan lost his only son Tyler in March.

The 22-year-old Visalia native was killed in a car accident near a U.S. military installation in Germany. At the time of his death, the Army Sergeant was rising in the ranks.

His father says he wanted to defend his country and found his calling in the Army. He was also engaged to be married.

"He was only 22 but when he came home he sounded like he was 30," Todd Vaughan said.

Since Tyler's death, things have not gotten any easier for his family. Todd says they recently received some of his belongings from Germany and his headstone will be ready this week. Each event is a reminder of their loss and a resurfacing of the pain.

"It just seems like when you think you close a chapter and you can take a breath and then something else pops up and starts all over," Vaughan said.

Sometime early Sunday morning, someone stole Todd's 2004 Silver GMC extended cab truck outside his house while he was on the coast.
Hanging from the rearview mirror inside were his son's dog tags that came home with his remains.

Todd says it was another kick in the gut. But Monday afternoon, he received a call from Delano Police-they found his truck.

Some things were stolen, but Garza's Towing found the dog tags in the backseat. For Todd, it was the best news because the tags are a reminder he'll hold onto forever.

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