Gary Sinise Recognizes Clint Eastwood for His Military Service

by Alex Falls

Actor Gary Sinise is best known for his roles in films such as Forest Gump and his long stint as Detective Mac Taylor on CSI: NY. Sinise is also passionate about honoring America’s veterans through The Gary Sinise Foundation. His organization is dedicated to honoring our defenders, veterans, first responders, their families, and those in need.

The Gary Sinise Foundation took to Twitter on Saturday to honor a famous figure in Hollywood with a history of serving our military: Clint Eastwood.

Eastwood joined the Army in 1951 and served during the Korean War at California’s Fort Ord as a swim instructor. During his service, Eastwood was on board a plane that crashed off the Northern California coast and was forced to swim ashore in rough waters. He and the pilot barely survived as Eastwood recounts in a talk at Marymount University.

“In those days, you could wear your uniform and get a free flight,” Eastwood said. “On the way back, they had one plane, a Douglas AD. Sort of a torpedo bomber of the World War II vintage, and I thought I’d hitch on that. Everything went wrong. Radios went out. Oxygen ran out. And finally, we ran out of fuel up around Point Reyes, California, and went in the ocean. So we went swimming. It was late October, November. Very cold water. Found out many years later that it was a white shark breeding ground, but I’m glad I didn’t know that at the time or I’d have just died.”

The Gary Sinise Foundation Helps Disabled Veterans Around the Country

The Gary Sinise Foundation works to aid American veterans you might not have heard of as well. “Freedom and security are precious gifts that we, as Americans, should never take for granted,” Sinise states on his foundation’s website. “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.”

Supporting disabled veterans takes extensive work according to Sinise in a Fox News on Veterans Day. He recounted a story of a man who received a new handicap-accessible home from the foundation. He went on to become part of the charity himself.

“Bryan [Anderson] is somebody I met several years ago — gosh, over 15 years ago,” Sinise began. “He sustained his injuries in 2005. He’s a triple-amputee, missing two legs and an arm. We’re both from Illinois, so we kind of connected at Walter Reed when I first met Bryan. After I started my foundation we became friends and he became an ambassador for my foundation.”