Actor and strong advocate for the American military and veterans, Gary Sinise has been selected by the US Army as the 2017 recipient of the George Catlett Marshall Medal. The medal is awarded for “sustained commitment to the men and women of America’s armed forces,” according to Military Times.
The Marshall Medal is named after “former General of the Army George Catlett Marshall Jr., a former Army Chief of Staff who also served as Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense and U.S. Special Envoy to China in a public service career that spanned from the Spanish-American War through the Truman administration,” according to Military Times.
The Marshall Medal is the Army’s highest award for distinguished public service. Military Times reports, Sinise will receive the medal at the annual Marshall Dinner on Oct. 11. The dinner will be held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.
In response to this great honor, Gary Sinise said,
“I am honored to be invited to receive the George Catlett Marshall Medal from the Association of the United States Army,” Sinise said in a statement. “It has been a great blessing to know there is something I can do to support the men and women in uniform who defend our nation and I will look forward to expressing my gratitude in person at the Marshall Dinner,” Independent Journal Review reported.
Sinise is probably best known for his roles on CSI: NY and as the paraplegic “Lt. Dan” in the 1994 Academy Award-winning Best Picture, Forest Gump. The “Lt. Dan” character struck a chord and created a deep bond for Sinise with veterans and service men and women throughout the world.
Gary Sinise has enjoyed a long successful television and movie career, but he is probably most proud of his role as a humanitarian and founder of the Gary Sinise Foundation. The foundation’s mission is to “serve our nation by honoring our defenders, veterans, first responders, their families, and those in need.”
“Freedom and security are precious gifts that we, as Americans, should never take for granted. We must do all we can to extend our hand in times of need to those who willingly sacrifice each day to provide that freedom and security. While we can never do enough to show gratitude to our nation’s defenders, we can always do a little more,” Gary Sinise said in explaining the focus of his Foundation.
Through Sinise’s foundation, he’s launched tremendously supportive programs like R.I.S.E. — which builds specially adapted homes for severely wounded veterans — Soaring Valor — which gifts WWII veterans the trip to pay their respects at the National Museum in New Orleans — and Relief & Resiliency Outreach — which provides complete support to those recovering from trauma, according to Independent Journal Review.