fbpx

Why Gary Sinise Devotes His Life to Serving Veterans and Their Families

Photo from Gary Sinise’s Instagram

Why Gary Sinise Devotes His Life to Serving Veterans and Their Families

By Movieguide® Contributor

Having spent decades of his life running his foundation, Gary Sinise explained where his desire to serve veterans comes from and why he continues to do so despite trials in his own life.

“As I’ve traveled over the years and gone to the hospitals…I started doing that many, many years ago—going to the war zones, all that stuff through the Iraq War, the Afghanistan War. Seeing broken families dealing with injuries and amputations and burns, and then Gold Star families losing their loved ones and watching them persevere through it,” Sinise told CBN News.

“And then, really seeing what simply showing up to pat somebody on the back and let them know that you appreciate them, and you care about them, and you feel for what they’re going through, seeing what that…can do, just motivated me to keep doing it,” he continued.

The groundwork for the foundation was set when the FORREST GUMP actor was young, growing up in a family with a military history.

“During the past forty years or so, since my Chicago days working with the Steppenwolf Theatre in the early ‘80s when I was supporting local Vietnam veteran groups there, into the ’90s supporting our wounded after playing Lt. Dan in Forrest Gump, and then post 9/11, 2001 and the terrorist attacks on our country, it’s become my lifelong mission to serve and honor our defenders, veterans, first responders, and their loved ones,” he told Forbes in 2021.

He began to commit himself more to serving veterans and raising money for their families. Sinise created his foundation in 2011 to better serve the men and women who protect our country and allow them to continue to be served by his work after he is gone. Sinise feels this response is only natural for the freedom that has been given to him from the sacrifice of these men and women.

“I’ve benefitted from that freedom,” he said. “I’ve had a great career… And it’s all because I’m free to do that. I’m free. And freedom comes at a cost, and people pay for it, and it’s the people that raise their hand and put the uniform on and go overseas and do the difficult, dangerous work.”

Working with the foundation has given Sinise a purpose beyond himself, which has helped him recently as he has faced trials in his own life.

“That has given me a lot of sense of purpose over the years. That there’s a purpose beyond just your self-pleasure – [a] pleasure in bringing pleasure to others and helping them through difficult times,” he said.

That fact helped him earlier this year when he had to grapple with the death of his son. Mac, Sinise’s 33-year-old son, died in January after battling Chordoma, a bone cancer in the spine. When asked how people could be praying for Sinise and his family, he asked fans to join him in praying for the military.

“There are so many men and women in uniform who struggle daily with the sacrifices they need to make to keep us all safe and free,” he said. “And I’m always praying for them, and I would encourage people to pray along with me for them. If more of us would reach out and touch each other, we make the world a better place. And I hope to be able to keep doing that. Mac inspired me to keep doing it.”

Movieguide® previously reported:

Gary Sinise shared a touching tribute to his son, McCanna Anthony “Mac” Sinise, who died in January following a battle with Chordoma.

“On February 27, 2017, our son Mac joined the team at Gary Sinise Foundation as our Assistant Manager of Education & Outreach. I was thrilled and excited to have him come on board to help me with the mission,” Sinise began.

“As a father, having him as part of the Foundation was a gift,” he added. “He was a great representative who cared about the mission and those we serve, and I was eager to watch him grow with the organization.”

The father-son duo also enjoyed seeing military veterans in local hospitals and “rockin’ out together for the troops,” as Sinise played bass and Mac filled in as drummer when needed.

4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.


4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.