CARBONDALE — Decades ago, four buddies joined the Army in the midst of the Vietnam War.

Recently, three of them met other veterans at Calandi's Bar/Restaurant and exchanged memories about their experiences since they hadn't seen each other in many years.

Buddy Team

Tom Cordner, Dave Hess, Donnie Miller and Bob Tonkin joined the Army more than 40 years ago on a Buddy Team enlistment.

The group noted: "Before having them draft us, we decided to join on our own plus there was no jobs in the area."

They went to Scranton with the intention of going the Air Force but the line was so long, so they went to the other line and joined the Army.

It didn't take long for them to find themselves in the reality of warfare.

On the first day in Vietnam, they had just pulled into the base when they heard loud popping noises. Ordered to get under a truck for cover, a commander yelled a sniper was in the area and to keep their head down.

They quickly began asking themselves: "What the hell am I doing here?"

While Rick Jones and his band played in the a background, a number of vets joined Cordner, Hess and Miller.

All but Tonkin if this original foursome, joined the gathering to reminisce about those days gone by.

Two of the foursome brought their medallions to the event.

Hess, Mickey Kopa, Mike Melando Sr, Mike Melando Jr., and John Stone played instruments
during the evening.

Calandi's may make this a monthly event where vets can get together and enjoy an evening of brotherhood.