Gary Sinise Helps Oldest Pearl Harbor Vet Travel To WWII Museum
By Movieguide® Contributor
The Gary Sinise Foundation celebrated one of its recent projects: helping America’s oldest Pearl Harbor survivor travel to the National WWII Museum.
The veterans foundation teamed up with Amtrak to help 105 year-old U.S. Army PFC Joseph Eskenazi get to the museum in New Orleans. Pictures posted to the foundation’s blog show Eskenazi celebrating his birthday onboard the train and enjoying his trip to New Orleans.
Actor and founder Gary Sinise spoke further about helping the WWII veteran travel to the museum during a local news appearance.
The actor thanked “all the thousands and thousands of donors that make these trips possible” before talking a little more about his partnership with the National WWII Museum.
“I’ve had a long relationship with [the museum] going back to when Tom Hanks invited me to do the voice of Ernie Pyle in the movie that plays at the museum,” Sinise explained.
In 2014, he helped his uncle Jack, a WWII veteran, visit the museum. He passed away shortly after, and Sinise said he thought “every family should have a video of their WWII family member hero [visiting the museum].”
This kickstarted Sinise’s partnership with the National WWII Museum, as well as a relationship with American Airlines, who help veterans travel to New Orleans.
Sinise also spoke about his years of work with veterans through the Gary Sinise Foundation.
“They don’t ask for much. They give a lot,” he shared. “They provide our freedom for us and then defend our cities…and each time I did something [with veterans], I just wanted to go out and do more.”
Movieguide® previously reported on Sinise’s work with veterans:
This holiday season, Gary Sinise expressed his gratitude for America’s servicemen and women.
“Supporting our nation’s heroes is my lifelong mission and I will continue to serve it faithfully,” Sinise shared. “It’s an honor to be recognized and the best part is that I get to, in turn, shine a light and recognize the true heroes who serve our country.”
In 2011, Sinise launched the Gary Sinise Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides support and fundraising for veterans.
“The mission of the Gary Sinise Foundation is broad, and this is a reflection of the needs I’ve seen over the many years supporting so many amazing organizations,” the actor explained. “And the Foundation’s mission is designed to also give us the freedom and flexibility to adapt to the ever-changing needs of our veterans, first responders, and the families who sacrifice alongside them.”
Sinise has spent years supporting the armed forces and veterans and frequently speaks about his admiration for them.
“Regardless of whether you are left or right, Republican or Democrat, conservative, liberal, whatever, our defenders defend us all,” Sinise said, “and having been in the military community for so long, I have met extraordinary people serving our country.”
He continued, “We all need heroes, people to look up to and aspire to. I think that we, as a grateful nation, can always do a little more to support them in their time of need.”
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