Skip to comments.Gary Sinise: An American Hero
Posted on 02/26/2012 12:53:40 PM PST by jazusamo
I'd like to tell you about an American hero I know: Gary Sinise.
Gary, as you know (unless you live under a rock), played Lt. Dan in Forrest Gump and currently stars in CSI New York. He boasts too many other award-winning roles on stage and screen to list. What you probably don't know is how much time, energy, and money Gary spends to serve our troops, both active-duty and veterans, and their families.
I first saw Gary perform in the basement of a Catholic church in Highland Park, IL about a million years ago. The lighting was rotten and the seats were uncomfortable, but the acting was like nothing I'd witnessed -- ever. To watch this man on stage was to step into the mind and life of the character he played. With all that in mind, though, I had no idea at fourteen that I would idolize Gary one day for something having absolutely nothing to do with his acting chops.
Cut to present: while still acting in a long-running hit show on broadcast television, Gary has dedicated his life to our troops. This man is driven like no one I have ever seen to make sure that our active-duty and veteran military men and women are cared for.
Gary is one of my heroes -- he has realized a calling that takes him from one corner of the world to another in support of our troops and their families. He does it all: he raises funds for his and other foundations, builds houses, plays music, and visits war zones. He manages all this at great personal cost, including loss of time with family, grave danger to life and limb when he goes to combat zones, and monetary expenditure from his own pockets.
(Excerpt) Read more at americanthinker.com ...
Note: Ft. Belvoir is in VA.
I just watched a Tony Awards program of past plays-—and Gary Sinise was in the lead role of “One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest “. It just showed a part of it but he was excellent. Always have liked him—he has lots of charisma and is very selfless—a good man.
Amen...He’s a very good actor and genuinely supports our military and veterans.
I admire Gary Sinise a lot for all he does, and appreciate his patriotism, but I would not call him a hero. I don’t think he would want people to think him a hero either. Others have given and sacrificed so much more than most of us can even imagine. They are the real heroes.
I fully agree, especially about him not wanting to be labeled a hero. I believe Mr. Harrison has admired Sinise for years and is a hero to him.
I’ll tell you something else about Sinise. He has a band called the “Major Dan Band” or something like that. I saw it perform at a corporate event a few years back.
Most celebrity bands basically just count on people being happy with the presence of the celebrity and go through the motions on preparation. These guys were not only good, but they went all out for nearly two hours. They were damned good!
It said something to me that he treated what clearly wasn’t the central aspect of his career so respectfully and professionally.
i’ve read about them playing for troops in theatre a bunch of times..GS is a patriot
He is a very good actor. He would have to be to play beside a flaming liberal like Tom Hanks in Forest Gump
I would call him a great American. I think that fits him better then hero.
I love the change but feel a little disappointed that it wasn't there when we returned.
I think his show CSI New York will be canceled. Not enough 18-49 year olds watching. It stinks because I love Sela Ward.
He got new legs..
The list of organizations Gary is helping is too long to mention, but it also includes organizations that aid the children of our fallen. Gary works with The USO, whose current goal is to raise roughly $100 million to complete and financially support two new USO centers (Operation Enduring Care) -- one at Ft. Belvoir, MD, and one at Walter Reed Army Hospital in Bethesda, MD. These centers help get our troops ready to ship out to places far away and help them reintegrate into society when they return from combat zones and from bases located around the world.
Lieutenant Dan Ping!
Thanks for pinging your list, AW.
I love that man and yes, a hero he is.
I’ve never thought I was a particularly vain person (who of us does?) but I did have an encounter with some tourists down in Washington DC that made my head swell.
I was counter-protesting with the DC Chapter of FR near the White House, as I stood with my sign supporting our troops, a man and woman asked if they could take my picture. I said sure, and faced their camera for the shot holding my sign out.
They then asked me if I was an acorn, to which I responded “Absolutely not!” and they both said they thought I was Gary Sinese!
I will tell you, I don’t have a bone in my body that envies what we see in Hollyweird to even a small degree, but I felt pretty puffed out to be mistaken for that man! They had to choose the ONE person in the film industry that I would have taken that as a compliment on!
(For the record, I look nothing like him, but I suspect it was the military ball cap and sunglasses that made that couple think so!)
I guess I live under a rock. I did not know who Mr. Sinise was.
Heh, I hate autocorrect, especially with all the errors I make with my hand in a cast...
Thanks for relating the story, rl.
That would definitely be a compliment being he is one of the few actors that do support our troops.
Thanks for posting this excellent story, jaz!
Thanks for your service, Little Bill...know that your experiences have something to do withe the broader support we see today.
There were many, myself included, who vowed never again to let the Left be the only voices the troops hear.
It was shameful, and every American who stayed silent when it happened SHOULD be ashamed.
When I see someone with any vet hat I go out of my way to thank them, but when I see a Vietnam Vet, I make a point of shaking their hand, looking them squarely in the eye and saying “Welcome Home, sir. Thank you for serving.”
I say that to you now Little Bill, but if I ever get the chance to see you in person, I’ll shake your hand and say it again.
I met him once where he was the guest of honor at a military ceremony and got to thank him for everything he’s doing. He was a genuinely nice, pleasant guy. Hollywood needs more like him.
Gotta love Lt Dan!
I didn't even catch the error. I really thought that they were asking if you worked for that goofy community organization ACORN.
It's a crazy world.
I’m pretty sure that if you asked him he would tell
you that he’s no hero but he knows some people who are.
That he’s a good AMERICAN is good enough for me.
Exactly! It EMBARRASSED me to realize how it scored a direct hit on my vanity, but...I think (or would like to think) it was only because I was mistaken for him!
The only time I enjoyed Forrest Gump was when Lt. Dan was on. Otherwise, that movie was stupid.
An American hero ping!
Check to see if there is an organization called "Patriot Guard" near you. We stand flag line for returning/departing troops, funerals for veterans of any war (and ride motorcycles if you got 'em).
It really helps you forget what was done. I was proud to help honor and grieve the loss of one of our brave Navy Seals this summer.
That post just made me cry! And if you are a vet, THANK YOU....if you aren’t thank you for loving them!
One of the very few hollywood types I would care to have as a personal friend. OIF vet
Here is a link to a great video of Gary.
Here is a link to a great video of Gary.
I’ll tell ya...my brain gets tied in knots sometimes...it is bad enough when I am battling that without having a computer “helping” me!
I can manage to embarrass myself on occasion WITHOUT any help, thank you very much!
Thanks for pinging, LUV W.
I wrote something a few years back (It was actually right after the “Gathering of Eagles” in Washington DC, March 2007.
This is an excerpt from it (too long to post here) but I wanted to summarize what I saw (The unfinished piece is called “What I Saw”...
We lived overseas during the worst part of the turbulent Sixties, leaving the country in 1967 and returning in the summer of 1971. During that time, we lived in Yokosuka, Japan and Subic Bay, PI. During that time, we were somewhat physically insulated from the social upheaval in the USA. But, as a kid delivering the Stars and Stripes for the better part of four years, I had plenty of time to look at the newspapers. For a young kid, I was pretty well tuned into what was going on in Vietnam and elsewhere. I read of the aviators who had been shot down. My friends and I knew their names. We wore metal wristbands with their names Alvarez, Stockdale, Denton. But that was not the subject that bothered me the most.
What really affected me was the anti-war movement. I read the articles about the war protests. I saw the pictures of the anti-war protestors. I was a twelve year old kid, and it seemed too real and too close to my world, and when I read the things that those protestors said, it made me angry like nothing else had. What I saw and read had a profound and lasting effect on me.
The hippies called people serving in the military things like baby killers and warmongers. Nowadays, it sounds almost humorous and archaic. But at the time, it was very serious and disturbing. I would look at my dad, my friends dad, and the men I saw going on and off the ships and think to myself These are baby-killers? Warmongers? They were talking about my dad, who I knew was none of those things. I knew he was a good and honorable man. I took it very personally, it hurt me, and I was angry about it. When it came time for my dad to rotate back to the USA, I didnt really want to go. I had heard stories about LSD being dropped into the lunch of unsuspecting kids at school and other such things. I was nervous.
But when I came back to the USA, the thing that really made me sit up and take notice was the atmosphere in the country regarding the military and the people who served in it. So much had changed in the years we were gone. The negative attitude towards the military was pronounced and vocal. In the local high school I attended, the teachers spoke of the military in extraordinarily negative tones. I remember one class where the teacher had us listen to Ohio by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, and the rest of the class was a discussion about why the military was an evil thing. I sat there and stewed, steaming mad. I was embarrassed, angry and hurt, but didnt have the guts to say anything. To me, it seemed like people left the military and disappeared into society, never to be seen or heard from again. The mental image I had was of men taking their uniforms off, ashamed, putting them in a box and never speaking of their service again to anyone.
What amazes me is his organizational skills. And his energy. Bob Hope, with whom is has been compared, also had this phenomenal energy.
Thank you so much for linking that, Realist.
It is an excellent story presented by Gary Sinise that everyone on this thread should view.
Thank you for sharing that. And God bless your dad for his service!
My hubby and I were in Germany during those dark days...he was in the Air Force...and we were actually fearful of coming back to the states when it came time! The protests on college campuses, the riots and burnings in cities, the hijackings to Cuba ( remember those?!) were very disturbing and scary!
You guys are great!
I had heard that the lefties, moon bats, Code Pink and the Westborough Baptist people were going to be doing a demonstration right outside of Arlington national Cemetery a couple years ago, so one of the DC Chapter of Free Republic invited me down to take part in the counterprotest.
I admit that there was a little bit more to this because of the Westboro Baptist people. I had seen some of the signs that they hold up, and I almost couldn’t believe it. So part of me really wanted to see this with my own eyes.
So, right outside the opening to Arlington national Cemetery, they had us isolated on one side of the access road, while on the other side the Westboro Baptist people were inside a rectangle barriers set up by the Park service. I think there was only about 10 of them at the most, but what really bothered me was a little girl who was about 6, maybe 7 years old holding an extremely vile sign.
During this time, there had been a steady procession of counter protesters who marched the large circle around them, to the point you just couldn’t see them. Initially, the counter protesters had been standing around them shoulder to shoulder about 3 deep, but after a while the Park service came over and told them they couldn’t protest like that. Apparently, they had to keep walking, so that’s what they did.
On our side of the road, we had some grateful people coming up to us to tell us how much they appreciated our being a counterbalancing voice to the hate on the other side. Amongst these people was a large contingent of the Patriot Guard. Now, you know what a lot of these folks look like the non-bikers they’re wearing their pirate gear (as my boss humorously refers to biker clothes!) And a lot of the guys are big and bearded. We found it hilarious, because we had these 3 little cute College girls who were protesting with us, and these big huge biker guys were chatting with them, it just looked really funny!
Anyway, we could see these Patriot Guards keep looking over at the Westboro Baptist people and getting more and more agitated. Finally, one of the biker says Watch this and 6 guys jumped on their Harleys started them up, all their front tires pointing at the rectangular enclosure across the street that held the Westboro Baptist protesters.
On cue, when there was a break in the traffic, the bikers gunned their engines and streaked across the street is that they were going to run right into the enclosure! At the last second, in unison they all swung around so that their exhausts were pointing at the Westboro Baptist protesters, and slowly backed their motorcycles so the exhaust was about 8 feet away from the barricade.
All the Patriot Guard guys began to rev their engines at very high RPMs and the noise was deafening! We laughed and cheered for several minutes as this went on, and finally the Park service came over and told them they had to move. I thought that was kind of funny, because the Park service just sat there and watched for a while, just to let the Patriot Guard guys do their thing before they called them off.
You guys are great. I have a huge degree of respect for your organization and what they do. God bless all of you
It’s the LT. Dan Band. (from his character, LT Dan in Forest Gump) Sinise is a class act by far, he’s done videos to help with post deployment depression & suicide and frequently comes to military posts to play with his band. Though I’ve never seen his performances, I have a lot of respect for Mr. Sinise.
I was in Yakoska Japan, And I was raised 35 miles south of Kent State Oh. I know the place well and I can tell you that the social meme about Kent is not at all what occured.
The National Guard was goaded into reluctant action.
Kids in the dorms were filling dixie cups with redi crete and hucking that at them when they ran out of rocks to throw.The Guard shot over their heads as a warning, but sadly bullets come down, and 4 kids who werent even protesting caught some 30.06
One of them lived like 4 miles from my house
Thanks! I will check around Buffalo, NY
I've never experienced anything but thanks and tears.
Fox News made a documentary film about his many visits to the war zones.
Here it is .. full film .. click the first selection: