4 Marines recreate beach pic taken before they left for Vietnam 50 years ago

Fifty years prior, four crisp confronted Marines postured together on a California shoreline weeks before being transported off to Vietnam.


“It was one of the greatest days in my life,” said the meeting’s instigator, Tom Hanks, a 69-year-old resigned speculation financier whose excursion to Vietnam occurred decades before his namesake performer did in “Timberland Gump.”


Hanks, who lives simply outside Atlanta, went over the first photograph in a collection a year ago and, in the wake of understanding that almost 50 years had passed, pondered reproducing the scene with the three other men in the photo, every one of whom live in Florida: Bob Falk, 71, Bob DeVenezia, 70, and Dennis Puleo, 69.

A tale about the arrangement for the gathering initially showed up in the Atlanta Constitution-Journal and afterward the Naples Daily News.

The first photograph was taken in May of 1966, when the four Marines, new out of training camp, chose to make the most of their weekend from San Diego’s Camp Pendleton by making a beeline for the shoreline in



“We were simply messing about. I’m not certain where we even got the surf board. It wasn’t our own,” Hanks told TODAY.

The men had built up a tight bond all through their seven months of preparing. From Camp Pendleton, the men in the end were delivered out to the Philippines for more planning.

“Falk, Puluo and me were heavy armament specialists,” DeVenezia reviewed. “Hanks was what they call a weapons fellow. He had bazookas, explosives, mortars.”


In the long run, the four would be sent off in various headings in Vietnam, where they confronted unbelievable conditions. Two of them earned Purple Hearts: DeVenezia earned one and Puleo, who at one point had been regulated last ceremonies, earned three.


Taking after the war, the men went on their different courses in different parts of the nation. Hanks turned into a speculation investor and DeVenezia ran a development organization. Falk went into retail administration and Puleo, home security. They wedded and raised families. One survived growth, and others post traumatic anxiety issue, much sooner than it was given a clinical name.


This previous weekend, on a photo immaculate Saturday morning, every one of the four men got together with each other surprisingly since coming back from Vietnam. They assembled in upper east Florida to reproduce the photograph organized five decades before, yet this time on Cinnamon Beach.

“See, everyone has reunions. They’re a dime twelve, yet this one? Dennis got last customs in the same fight I got shot in,” DeVenezia said. “The way that we’re all alive following 50 years, a great deal less survived Vietnam, is the thing that makes the story pe


Falk, DeVenezia and Hanks had become together twice since 2011, reconnecting through an online commemoration for a fallen friend. Be that as it may, Puleo remained a question mark to the others.

“Getting the fourth in was difficult, yet we did it, and it was astounding,” DeVenezia, said. “He was active and more satisfied than I’ve ever seen him.”

Hanks said the gathering was superior to anything he envisioned, yet discussing it, even days after the fact, still gets him started crying. “It’s exceptionally passionate in light of the fact that we’re discussing folks why should willing kick the bucket for each other,” he said.


“It’s difficult to portray, however it was an awesome, superb ordeal for every one of the four of us. We were simply lounging around and BS’ing and talking. It resembled nothing had changed despite the fact that 50 years had passed,” Hanks said.


“The best some portion of it was going down to the shoreline and messing about and pushing each other around. We resembled 20-year-old children.”


DeVenezia said he adored re-sanctioning the photograph, despite the fact that “my knees are still sore from hunkering down on the sand.”

Hanks returned home Sunday, while a percentage of the other men stayed behind for one more day. He said the gathering went separate ways without making any arrangements.

“We truly didn’t abandon it in any restricted. We simply left it lingering palpably,” he said. “Be that as it may, guess what? That is the way we generally do it. Perhaps in two or three years, we’ll get together once more.”