National Memorial Day Concert

Gary Sinise

Gary SiniseGary Sinise

Actor/humanitarian Gary Sinise has been actively and tirelessly supporting the troops for over thirty years. Among his numerous film and television roles, it was his portrayal of Lt. Dan Taylor in the landmark film Forrest Gump which formed an enduring connection with servicemen and women throughout the military community. After several USO handshake tours in 2003, Sinise formed the “Lt. Dan Band” and began entertaining troops serving at home and abroad. Performing pop hits to classic rock staples, the 12-member cover band has played for over half-a-million troops and their families. His endless work on behalf of those who’ve served has earned him many distinguished awards, including The Bob Hope Award for Excellence in Entertainment from the Medal of Honor Society, the Spirit of the USO Award, The Ellis Island Medal of Honor and in 2008 he was given the Presidential Citizens Medal, the second-highest civilian honor awarded to citizens for exemplary deeds performed in service of the nation, only the third actor ever to receive this honor. He was recently presented with The Sylvanus Thayer Award given by the United States Military Academy and West Point, Spirit of Hope Award by the Department of Defense and was named an honorary Chief Petty Officer by the Navy. In 2011, he launched the Gary Sinise Foundation to honor its defenders, veterans, first responders, their families and those in need by creating and supporting unique programs designed to entertain, educate, inspire, strengthen and build communities. These include its R.I.S.E. program (Restoring Independence and Supporting Empowerment), whose flagship initiative is a custom Smart Home building project for severely wounded veterans. Each home is customized to ease their daily challenges and help restore independence with features like retractable cook tops, cabinets and shelving, elevators and more, all accessible via an iPad. Other programs include Relief & Resiliency Outreach, Invincible Spirit Festivals, Serving Heroes and Arts & Entertainment Outreach. Over the years, the Foundation has formed numerous corporate partnerships, including American Airlines, Jos. A. Bank Clothiers, Sysco Foodservice and most recently with GE on their Get Skills to Work program to help veterans translate military skills into advanced manufacturing jobs while empowering employers with tools to recruit, onboard and mentor veterans. The Gary Sinise Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization. For more information, please visit www.garysinisefoundation.org.

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