Actor Who Played ‘Lt Dan’ Pays Tribute to Military on 25th Anniversary of Film ‘Forrest Gump’

July 12, 2019 Updated: July 12, 2019

Over the years, movie star Gary Sinise has racked up an impressive rolodex of acting credits. He’s managed to stretch out his relevance to pick up an Emmy, a Golden Globe, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and he’s become synonymous with military support while in the process of fleshing out his impressive career.

When he first got his big break, though, he wasn’t known for being a bastion of support for the armed forces. And since it was due to his most iconic role that he’s become such an ardent supporter, he decided to give that fictional character a touching shout-out this July on the 25th anniversary of when it was introduced to the world.

Sinise tweeted a sweet but succinct memorial post to the character Lieutenant Dan Taylor on July 6th, the 25th anniversary of the day that “Forrest Gump” hit the theaters.

“25 years ago Forrest Gump opened in theaters. Lt Dan Taylor will always be a fav & special role,” he wrote in a two-part tweet.

Not only was it an honor to act alongside some incredible talent, working on a great script directed by Robert Zemeckis, but the character itself helped forge a bond w/ our military that I never could have predicted. Thanks 2 the fans who continue 2 celebrate Forrest Gump & Vietnam Veteran Lt Dan Taylor, & thanks 2 our military & defenders, 4 your continued embrace & friendship after all these years. It’s an honor to serve you at @GarySiniseFound.

Sinise, a native of Blue Island, Illinois, has become one of Hollywood’s most ardent supporters of the United States Military. He formed the Lt. Dan Band, named after his pivotal role in Forrest Gump, to travel to U.S. military outposts and perform musical covers to provide entertainment for the troops.

He also founded the Gary Sinise Foundation, which raises money for veterans and military families. In particular, they have given support to wounded vets and amputees and well as families who have lost parents during service.

As he explained in his memorial post, though, all of that incredible advocacy work can be traced back to the role that he landed in one of America’s most universally beloved films.

Lt. Dan was Forrest Gump’s commanding officer in the Tom Hanks feature, then became his best friend and business partner as the movie progressed after he returned home a double amputee. Sinise was a somewhat-established actor at the time of the movie’s release due to a role in John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men” film adaptation, but his performance as the Vietnam War veteran truly launched him into the spotlight.

It was that role that landed him his first Oscar nomination and Golden Globe nod, but more importantly brought him a sense of awareness to what the United States military goes through both during war and during their transition back into society.

He’s earned an honorary Marine designation by the USMC for his advocacy work but gives all the credit to that iconic character from a quarter of a decade ago. Thanks to that role, he’s become a pivotal figure in normalizing military support—and he recognizes it thoroughly.

Be sure to see Tom Hanks & Gary Sinise in the limited IMAX engagement of Forrest Gump. Only 2 more days!

Forrest Gump စာစုတင်ရာတွင် အသုံးပြုမှု ၂၀၁၄၊ စက်တင်ဘာ ၉၊ အင်္ဂါနေ့