Mayor Presents Proclamation Honoring Corporal Hunter Lopez to Former Army Ranger

INDIO — At the Indio City Council meeting today, Aug. 16, Mayor Oscar Ortiz will celebrate US Army Veteran Ralph Duarte for his exemplary service to our local veteran community in observance of “Hunter Lopez Day.” Duarte served with the 3rd Ranger Battalion from 2004 to 2008 and completed two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan.

“The Indio Council is welcoming our community to join us in honoring the brave life of Hunter Lopez and his mission of helping others,” said Indio Mayor Oscar Ortiz. “Former Army Ranger Ralph Duarte is an inspiration to me, the Council and many others for his unending desire to aid his fellow veterans. He is a great model of the spirit of Hunter’s mission.”

Duarte has been the Senior Veterans’ Representative for the County of Riverside Veterans Services since May 2013. He has done incredible work throughout his ten years of service. His accreditations include the National Association of County Veterans Service Officers, California Department of Veterans Affairs, American Legion, Military Order of Purple Heart, Disabled American Veterans, The Retired Enlistment Ass. and Veterans of Foreign Wars.

He was also named 56th Assembly District 2016 Veteran of The Year. Unfortunately, Ralph Duarte will not be in attendance due to his graduation ceremony, where he will be awarded a master’s degree. However, we are honored to have Keanu Stoneburner, a Marine Corps Veteran, and dedicated Veterans’ Services Representative for the County of Riverside, accept the proclamation on Mr. Duarte’s behalf.

On Aug. 26, 2021, the Coachella Valley mourned the loss of Corporal Hunter Lopez, a local hero who tragically lost his life at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, alongside 12 other courageous U.S. service members. To commemorate his impact, the city designated August 26th as “Hunter Lopez Day.” The City of Indio continues to express gratitude for Hunter Lopez’s sacrifice by presenting a proclamation to a current or former Armed Forces member each year.

In memory of their beloved son, Capt. Herman Lopez and Deputy Alicia Lopez, have established the Hunter Lopez Memorial Foundation. The Foundation raises funds for student scholarships, reunions of military personnel with their loved ones, and other noble causes that carry on Hunter’s legacy. Those interested in donating can visit

The next Indio City Council meeting will be held today, Aug. 16 at 5 p.m. in Indio City Hall Council Chambers. Indio residents and surrounding community members are invited and encouraged to attend.

Image Sources

  • Hunter Lopez: RSO Facebook