Vietnam Marines Reunite to Recreate 50-Year-Old Longboard Photo

Longboard photo (via Marine Corps Times and Naples Daily News)
Cropped photo via Marine Corps Times and Naples Daily News

Four U.S. Marine veterans, who fought together during the Vietnam War, reunited for the first time in 50 years last weekend to recreate an iconic moment they had captured on camera in their youth, the Naples Daily News reports.

Bob Falk, 71, Dennis Puleo, 69, Tom Hanks (not that one), 69, and Bob DeVenezia, 70, were reunited after Falk stumbled upon an online memorial Hanks had created for a fallen Marine that they all knew.

While the original photo, estimated around circa 1966, was taken at California’s Oceanside beach, the Naples News Daily reports that last Saturday’s recreation was snapped on the sun-drenched Atlantic shore of Cinnamon Beach on Florida’s northeast coast.

“Mission accomplished,” Falk reportedly said as he walked back from the image they had taken. Two of the four men had earned Purple Hearts for their service during the war that nearly tore the nation in half with protests.

The men were able to duplicate the picture almost perfectly, including the surfboard in the background. All four men had gone on to build successful careers for themselves after leaving their service: DeVenezia in construction in New Jersey; Falk in retail management in Florida; Hanks in investment banking in Atlanta; and Puleo in home security between the Northeast and Florida.

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