Adulthood is the hardest time to maintain a relationship. Between working, school, and family, most people’s friendships seem to disintegrate before their 30’s. But this doesn’t apply to everyone.
And one group of friends has been very mindful to not take their friendship for granted. The crew consists of three Johns, Dallas, and Mark. What is special about them is not only how they’ve all been friends for more than 30 years, but the way they’ve maintained that friendship.
In their younger years, the whole crew was invited up to John W.’s grandparent’s cabin in Northern California. At one point, they decided to take a picture of the five of them together.
The friends took the first picture in 1982.
From left to right, the picture shows John W., Mark, Dallas, John M., and John D.
All of the friends were 19 years old at the time. The photo with them sitting on the fence wasn’t intended for it to become a tradition. They just wanted a nice picture together.
“I think we were trying to look cool,” one of them told Inside Edition. With them being that young, it’s no surprise that they were trying to look like they did, with 3 of them being shirtless.
In 1987, they met at the same cabin to take another picture.
They don’t look like high-schoolers anymore, but still pretty young.
After the second picture, the guys had a revelation. They were thinking about the possibility that they wouldn’t even know each other 20 years from that point. So they decided to make the picture a tradition.
Every five years, the guys would meet up at the same cabin, in the same location, to take the exact same picture. And they didn’t disappoint.
1992: All the Johns have a shirt on this time, even if John D’s shirt looks a little big for him.
They claimed that they had all put on shirts because there was no sun, and they had started to get “flabby” as well.
1997 was one they considered had strayed too far from the original 1982 picture.
Whereas the previous ones had shows the gang at more of an angle, this is more of a wide shot. Besides that, this looks like the first year where John D. was smiling. They swore to make the next picture look as close to the original as possible.
2002: they went back to the original’s roots, and it seems to have worked.
2007: this one was close to not happening.
It turns out the day before the shoot, Mark’s flight to near the location was canceled on short notice. So instead of not making it, he drove 12 hours overnight just to make it in time for the shoot. It takes a true friend to be able to do something like that.
2012: the year grey hair entered the picture.
If anything, the grey hair symbolizes that the friendship has withstood the test of time.
And the last photo in 2017, shirts were back off for all of the Johns.
And they brought back the shirtless picture for old time’s sake.
For five people to maintain a friendship for more than 30 years is almost unheard of in itself. The three Johns, Mark and Dallas seem to have a bond that’ll never be broken, and their friendship will last them until their next picture in 2022, and hopefully beyond.