Albuquerque artist searches for man she helped years ago


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) –  An Albuquerque artist has the perfect muse in mind for her next project. But she needs help tracking him down

Natalie Voelker loves telling peoples’ stories through her art.

“Some of them are close friends,” said Voelker. “Some of them I barely know.”

But even with all the faces lining her studio wall, she said one person is missing.

About three years ago, Voelker was driving on I-25 when she saw a bluish-gray van broken down on the side of the road. A man was trying to flag people down.

“He had his grandma with him, and this woman, I don’t know it might’ve been his girlfriend, and then there was a small child with them,” said Voelker.

She stopped to help. The man told her he ran out of gas and no one had stopped for more than three hours.

“He had tattoos on his face and his neck and he said that was probably the reason no one was stopping,” said Voelker.

She drove him to the nearest gas station. On the way, Voelker said they talked about everything from her art to his construction job.

“He seemed like a very curious and kind person,” said Voelker.

The family was soon back on the road. But since that day, Voelker hasn’t been able to get the man and his family out of her head.

“I kept thinking about it afterwards, how he was just an intriguing person and I’d really like to draw him,” said Voelker.

She now wants to paint them for her next project showcasing New Mexico families. But she has no idea how to find him.

“He’s gotta be between 37 and 39 years old,” said Voelker. “I think his name might be Angel.”

Voelker said the man is Hispanic with dark hair. She said he also has tattoos on his face and neck.

But even with little to go off of, she hopes their unique story will bring them together again.

If these two reconnect and he wants to take part in her project, Voelker plans to showcase the paintings in the family’s neighborhood.

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