TAMPA, Fla. — Scott Neil was one of the Green Berets sent into Afghanistan to take down the Taliban after the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
"On 19 October, 2 special forces teams went in on the North and that’s kind of what we know today from the movie and the statue at ground zero as the horse soldiers," said Neil.
"They raised an unconventional militia army of horsemen and they started attacking the Taliban so much so that within 90 days, less than 90 green berets overtook Afghanistan," he added.
Neil’s story was recreated for Hollywood — “12 Strong” was released in January.
Now, the former Army Master Sergeant calls Tampa home. He has even started a new venture — creating his own bourbon.
"We decided to make a little whiskey... make whiskey not war is our tagline," said Neil.
He says it’s important for he and fellow veterans have a chance to transition into another career after the military. For him, creating the American Freedom Distillery was perfect.
American heroes, producing an American product, with an American story flowing through it.
"For us, it was a way we could do both art and science and it was a way that we can make a product that truly reflects [who] we are," said Neil.
Saturday Neil and others will be hosting the Whiskey and War Stories event at the Bourbon Barber on 7522 N. Armenia Avenue in Tampa.
He says it’s a chance for them to connect with the community while sharing what their new venture means to them.