Gary Sinise: ‘Supporting Our Nation’s Heroes Is My Lifelong Mission’

Photo from Gary Sinise Foundation’s Instagram

Gary Sinise: ‘Supporting Our Nation’s Heroes Is My Lifelong Mission’

By Movieguide® Contributor

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.”

Movieguide® previously reported on Sinise’ mission to help veterans:

Hollywood actor Gary Sinise launched his non-profit organization, The Gary Sinise Foundation, over 10 years ago and wants to continue to honor those who serve.

“Through the Gary Sinise Foundation, and through my work with our veterans, I have a lot of compassion for them,” he said in a recent podcast. I have no control over decisions that are made with regard to what our military is going to do. It was the same thing in Vietnam. What I do have control over is how I respond to our soldiers, as an American citizen.”

Sinise was one of many who acknowledged the mistreatment of military servicemen and women after the withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2021. “I’m not in government. I’m not a political figure who can order people around, tell him what to do and all that stuff. But I can take matters into my own hands with regards to how I treat the men and women who serve our country. They should know that their service matters.”

Sinise doubled down on the idea that the responsibility to care for the people who protect freedom falls on the American citizen, not only on the government.

“American citizens have the freedom to make choices,” Sinise said. “Our freedom is provided by the men and women who serve our country and protect us. So my particular mission here is to support our defenders. I don’t anticipate that nor think it reasonable to consider that that government will provide everything for everybody. Citizens can take responsibility, I value my freedom. I know where it comes from, there are people that go out and protect our country.”

Despite the need for more support and more resources to ensure that veterans and military families are cared for, Sinise said that military support has improved drastically through non-profit organizations such as his own.

“We just this past, June celebrated our 10th year, we’re in our 11th year now. So it’s relatively young as a foundation, but actually, the roots of it are deep because I’ve been very active with military support, veteran support going back into the 80s and into the 90s. And then, you know, post-September 11, got very involved with so many different military charities and then those were all the routes that the Gary Sinise foundation stands on,” he explained. “Now we’re 10 years into the mission of the Gary Sinise Foundation. We have a tremendous mission. And we’re getting great things done for the men and women and serve our country.”

Sinise says aid for veterans has increased significantly in recent years.

“I think it’s definitely improved since Vietnam,” he added. “I found that I could play a role in just trying to bridge that gap a little bit, bring my public platform that I have as a movie and television personality, and use that to shine a spotlight on the men and women who are serving our country and try to educate people as to what they’re doing because I was going to the military bases and I was seeing them in action and I came home and started talking about it to folks like you on these podcasts and different things.”