He received his draft notice in 1969 and not long after basic training, Robert Sienecki was in the middle of serious combat duty.

He told Erie News Now, "I knew where I was headed after jungle training and that was Vietnam. I'm thinking things are happening pretty quickly here and we were there for weeks at a time."

Sienecki also remembers his mentor, Steve White from the state of Indiana and how his life was cut short at such a young age.

"You get to know these people after a few months and the next thing you know, he's gone. You just try not to think about it."

Robert's older brother Steve, also a Vietnam Veteran, passed away earlier this year. 

Steve was an Erie Firefighter for 32 years.