Green Beret soldiers portrayed in movie to open distillery

By Katie Jones, Reporter
Last Updated: Thursday, March 08, 2018, 2:25 PM EST

They were part of an elite special forces team that took on the Taliban after 9/11, and now, some of the retired Green Beret soldiers whose stories were told on the recent movie "12 Strong" are getting into the whiskey business in the Bay Area.

  • American Freedom Distillery expected to open this summer
  • 10 retired Green Beret soldiers behind endeavor
  • Building will be 17,000 square feet

"It was very emotional for all of us. America was attacked," Retired Green Beret Bob Pennington said.

"I took it all in and thought, 'Wow this is us, this is me in a movie,'" Pennington said.

From the battlefields to whiskey barrels, Pennington is one of 10 retired Green Beret soldiers that are entering a new endeavor in St. Petersburg.

"I applied the planning and organizational and coordinating skills I used in the military into the whiskey business," Pennington said.

They are about to open a one-of-a-kind business called "American Freedom Distillery."

"That's what's unique about the bonds of brotherhood and their families. We all remain quite close as we retired at different times," retired Green Beret Scott Neil said.

The 17,000-square-foot building will be filled with different spirits, food and war stories.

The men took on the Taliban after terrorists attacked and said it was a mission that formed an unbreakable bond.

American Freedom Distillery is expected to open this summer.