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Sinise Shows His Gratitude

By Rachel
February 28, 2008 - 7:11 AM

Gary Sinise (Mac Taylor) makes time in his busy CSI: New York schedule to give back.

Sinise has been playing the bass for years, and he put a band together several years ago to travel around and play for American service members. "Wherever we go, when we play for the troops, it's always a great show," Sinise told the Rapid City Journal. "They're always happy that we're there. We're happy to be there." The actor and his Lt Dan Band have performed for troops across the country as well as overseas. The group is named after Sinise's famous character from Forrest Gump because when the band would go to play for troops, that's often how he was recognized.

The connection to the character of Lt Dan is especially relevant when Sinise speaks to wounded veterans. "When I walk in, it's like Lt. Dan is walking in, and they think that I understand their situation because I played the character," he explained. "I only understand it so much. That was acting. But I think because I did play that character, there's some kind of connection they make with me. And if I can come in and help them during a difficult time in the hospital, that's the least I can do."

When he filmed Forrest Gump, Sinise spoke with wounded Vietnam veterans before portraying Lt Dan. The actor also has veterans in his family, and he explained why he and his band go out to play for the troops. "I remember all too well what it was like for our Vietnam veterans to come home from war to a nation that was divided and torn and ungrateful for what our service members had gone through," he said. "And we don't want that to happen to our service members again."

The original article is from the Rapid City Journal.

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