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Sinise and Brady Urge Support for Veterans

By Frederick A. Johnsen

  • Sinise and Brady urge support for veterans
    Gen. Patrick Brady, Medal of Honor recipient (left) and actor Gary Sinise held a special Warbirds in Review session on Friday during which they championed veterans.
July 24, 2015 - In a fresh twist to the popular Warbirds in Review sessions in Warbird Alley at AirVenture 2015, Medal of Honor recipient Gen. Patrick Brady and actor Gary Sinise discussed veteran valor and championed veterans’ causes.

Looming majestically around them, the Yankee Air Force B-17G Flying Fortress faced a Vietnam-era UH-1 Huey helicopter. Gen. Brady talked briefly about the harrowing medevac missions he flew under intense enemy fire that led to his Medal of Honor. Brady said he actually felt embarrassed to receive the medal for doing what so many others had done unseen. “So you wear it for them.”

Gen. Brady discussed fear in combat: “My faith was a substitute for fear,” he said. “Fear is an emotion; courage is a decision.” Spontaneous applause saluted the general’s observations.

Gen. Brady is working in support of the creation of a Medal of Honor museum. He describes the concept as emphasizing honor and values more than any specific military branch.

He also spends time with a veterans outreach activity in which students are paired with veterans, and learn their stories. “These veterans are happy to share their experiences if someone will just ask them,” Brady encouraged the audience.

Sinise, known for his portrayal of amputee Lt. Dan in the movie Forrest Gump, established a nonprofit foundation to help injured veterans and their families.

Sinise discussed his uncle, a B-17 navigator, and his brother-in-law, a Vietnam-era medic, as being inspirations to him. Sinise and his Lt. Dan Band have entertained military members abroad as part of his commitment to America’s armed forces. Gen. Brady said, “Gary Sinise is the Bob Hope of today,” referencing Hope’s legendary trips in support of troops overseas.
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