‘SEAL Team’ Star Justin Melnick Spent Years in Afghanistan and Elsewhere as a Combat Photographer

by Shelby Scott

Outsiders know that our “SEAL Team” cast members endure a lot and work hard to communicate the realities of our country’s most elite service members, our Navy SEALs. Further, we commend their efforts. However, we’ve learned that one “SEAL Team” star, Justin Melnick, actually served as a combat photographer in Afghanistan for several years. In this way, the actor and former military photographer witnessed the realities of our nation’s service members up close.

In speaking with Variety, “SEAL Team’s” Brock Reynolds actor shared his experience as a combat photographer in an active militaristic zone. He said, “I spent about six years working all over the world as a combat photographer, and it culminated in Afghanistan.”

During the interview, Melnick stated he spent a total of three months “embedded with the troops in Afghanistan.”

His months-long stay combined with traveling the entire Middle Eastern country by ground and air led Melnick to a desire to serve.

“What I saw over there motivated me to want to be [a part] of the solution,” Helnick said. Unfortunately, the “SEAL Team” actor shared that, despite his efforts, things didn’t pan out as he’d hoped. At 29 years old, the actor was forced to realize he couldn’t do what he initially wanted to.

However, despite the undesirable turn of events, Melnick found a way to help people in a completely different respect.

‘SEAL Team’ Star Aims Works with Various Police Forces

Prior to “SEAL Team,” Melnick shared he had “randomly” connected with a small police force in Indiana. Immediately afterward, he wound up moving there.

“I spent seven years revamping their program, helping them with their active shooting training,” Melnick shared with the outlet.

Overall, the “SEAL Team” star was unable to follow his passions into active duty like he initially he wanted. However, he was still utilized a lot of that training with the IN police force, in addition to others nationwide.

“[In] using the training from metropolitan police departments and military units based off of counter-terrorism measures,” Melnick helped smaller forces such as the one in IN prepare “to combat the situation if there was to be an active shooter.”

“SEAL Team” fans know and love Melnick for his role as Brock Reynolds on the action-packed show. Although, the actor stated his training and his utilization of it benefited small police departments multiple times.

He shared with Variety, “[W]e managed to stop a few things before they actually happened due to proactive policing.

There’s no doubt then that we look forward to seeing Melnick and Dita on “SEAL Team” each week. However, it turns out the actor does as much good with military training off screens as he does on screen.