Floyd Brown didn't know Merlin Hollenbach before Vietnam.
Brown grew up in Lehighton. Hollenbach lived in Andreas but worked in Lehighton as a mechanic at Scotty's Fashions.
Brown was in Vietnam for some time before Hollenbach arrived. They eventually ended up in the same Army infantry division and became friends.
Brown came home safely. Hollenbach didn't.
On a Friday morning, Dec. 22, 1967, only three days before Christmas, their unit began moving out for patrols in Binh Duong, South Vietnam.
Brown remembers it well, even the exact time. It was 7:03 a.m.