Picture framer Jac Recsei was moved by the faces on a World War I honour board as she worked to recreate it.
"I just kept thinking, 'They are so young'," Ms Recsei said.
The face of Private William Mason, now clear on the replica board created by Finer Frames and Gallery, is in stark contrast to the picture sent by a descendant to Yackandandah Historical Society researcher Thelma Buchanan.
"He looks absolutely shell-shocked in the picture from when he came back," Ms Buchanan said.
"He was only 16 when he volunteered, and his father signed off for both himself and his wife on the consent form.
"When his wife found out, she packed her bags."
The stories of 32 men who served are unique and have been pieced together by Ms Buchanan and Ian Touzel, as they carefully assessed the deteriorated cardboard and leather honour board.
"There's no record of any fundraising, or anything in the local papers about it," he said.
"All we've got to date it is a poem by local women Ruth Bidgood.
"It's dated November of 1918 and the poem is 'On the dedication of an honour roll in a country state school'."
Its origins are also a mystery to Ms Recsei, whose team has created as close a replica as possible to the beyond-repairable honour board.
"When we measured it, we realised that it must have been cut by a professional," she said.
"I think they've had the mats cut in the city and then they've decorated it here.
"How it came about, I have no real clue. They must have spent pounds on it."
Ms Recsei said they were able to retain the original frame and make clearer soldiers' portraits with the help of Plan Scan in Albury.
"We traced the lettering on the old mat, programmed it and did the de-bossing on the computer, but I hand-painted everything because you couldn't do it any other way," she said.
"We tried to copy it the best we could, and be respectful."
The site of the recreated honour board, revealed at the Wodonga business on Thursday, brought tears to Mr Touzel's eyes.
"This used to hang on the wall at church; I would look up at it each Sunday," he said.
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The finished project would have no doubt been heartening for the late Alf Sutherland, who located the pictures of many of the local men and was determined to resurrect the honour board damaged by water in the 1980s.
The Historical Society is still seeking photos for Private William Thomas Watkins (1893-1971), Driver Art Wise (1894-1960), Private William Keenan (1894-1959), and James Keenan enlisted as Private James Ashworth.