For years, actor Gary Sinise has dedicated his time, treasure and talents to helping military veterans and their families, and now a star-studded group of public figures and actors are thanking the celebrity for his good works.
In response to the video, which was first reported by People, Sinise said he was “completely shocked” and “incredibly touched,” adding, “I’m crying, so choked up, I thought I’d share.”
— People (@people) February 13, 2019
Here’s the original video:
— Gary Sinise (@GarySinise) February 12, 2019
Some of the heavy hitters featured in the video include fellow “Forrest Gump” star Tom Hanks, retired four-star Army Gen. Colin Powell, comedians Tim Allen and Jay Leno as well as actors like Patricia Heaton, Robert DeNiro, and many more.
“Thank you for all the things you have done for our men and women who have served our nation,” Powell said. “Not only what you’ve done for them but for their children, what you’ve done for their families, what you’ve done to help them rebuild their lives.”
People captured Sinise’s emotional reaction as he watched the tribute:
The video also features grateful comments from veterans who have benefited from Sinise’s charity.
“As you can see we’re in front of this beautiful house right now,” one veteran explained. “We wouldn’t have had it were it not for your kindness, graciousness and your wonderful gift giving.”
According to People, the idea for the video came from retired four-star Air Force Gen. Robin Rand, CEO of the Gary Sinise Foundation. He quietly orchestrated the entire video, including all the celebrity appearances and veteran thank-yous, as part of a surprise for Sinise.
Sinise’s passion for veterans was first sparked in 1994 when “Forrest Gump” debuted. The 63-year-old actor has since then dedicated much of his career to helping veterans in need.
Throughout the 1990s, Sinise partnered with Disabled American Veterans organizations and participated in several USO tours in 2003. One year later, he formed the Lt. Dan Band, which tours around the globe entertaining military personnel stationed abroad.
“That makes me feel really good,” Sinise said after seeing the video.