Gary Sinise in not just an actor and musician, he’s an everyday hero. Sinise is well-known for his role as Lieutenant Dan in the classic movie Forrest Gump, but his most important achievement is the work he does to support real-life veterans.
Sinise has established the Gary Sinise Foundation and dedicates a significant amount of time and resources to honor US-veterans by providing backing to veterans, their families and their communities.
The Foundation runs many different programs intended to support the veterans, and one such program is the ‘Snowball Express.’
This program honors fallen soldiers by taking their children on a free trip to Disney World. On the 2018 trip, 1,000 children and their moms were taken on a five-day stay at the park.
Over 14 planes, serviced by nearly 1000 American Airline employees who volunteered their time, flew more than 600 families to Orlando.
The children and their surviving parents got to spend five magical days at the park together and regain some light in their lives
The families were also offered free counselling services, mentoring, and education, to make sure that the trip would be a healing experience.
“The most important thing about [Snowball Express] is that these children don’t feel alone. There’s a lot of healing and a lot of bonding and a lot of friendship goes on that helps them through the rest of the year,” Sinise has said, as reported by Bored Panda.
The visit also included an event honoring the fallen parents. The children and their remaining parents received ‘I remember’ pins, and 600 flags, each one symbolising a lost loved one, were lined up in remembrance of the fallen soldiers.
The children and their surviving parents were able to find comfort, understanding and community amongst the other bereaved families.
The Gart Sinise Foundation has brought back laughter into these children’s lives during the most difficult time of their young lives, and his support means the world to them and their surviving parents.
Sinise is dedicated to continuing his important work and help more families. Thanks to him, countless families have received new strength, hope and magical Disney-memories.