PIX11 on a mission to reunite photos lost during Sandy with Rockaway family

Posted at 11:07 PM, Dec 13, 2012
and last updated 2012-12-14 19:43:12-05

BELLE HARBOR (PIX11) — This week, an envelope arrived at our station without a return address.

Inside was a plastic bag filled with a dozen family photos covered in dirt.

The sender didn’t leave his or her name but they did leave a small note, saying that they were volunteering on Beach 134th Street in the Rockaways when they came across the photos and sent them to PIX 11 in hopes our news team could help.

Our journey to reunite those special memories with their rightful owner began on the end of Beach 134th Street in Belle Harbor, going to door to door for blocks, showing the residents the pictures.

to reunite these special memories with their rightful owner.  Problem is we don’t know who that is yet so we are going to start knockin’ on some doors.”

Resident Jen Lawler said she recognized a boy in one of the pictures, “Yeah, he’s like, grown up now but I think he looks familiar. I don’t think they are living here though.”


One of the lost photos from Far Rockaway that was sent to the PIX11 station

We walked several blocks and knocked on a dozen doors.

Resident Liz Glynn gave us good advice, “You know, the family across the street there, are old time Rockaway families, born and raised here.  Try them.”

Across the street, as soon as Kevin Murphy saw the first photo of a bride and groom feeding each other wedding cake, Murphy said, “That’s Charlie Marquart. But his kids are high school so this photo is like 15 years old.”

“He used to live up the block.  He is a basketball coach at Malloy College on Long Island.  I don’t know where they are now though.  I had heard their parents’ home got wrecked in Breezy so they had to move them out of there and they had to go.”

Then, Kevin realized his young son Jake knows Charlie’s daughter Katie.  So he called Katie and got her voicemail.  We left a message.

By the end of Thursday night, we put a name with the face in the photos:  The Marquart family.

When our story aired, we got a call back from Charlie Marquart himself!

Stay tuned for the reunion story on PIX 11 News.