Forrest Gump actor, Gary Sinise, famous for his role as Lt. Dan in the movie, treated more than 1000 family members of fallen soldiers on a 5 day all expenses paid trip to Disney World.
The trip is part of Gary Sinise Foundation’s Snowball Express and American Airlines which invited more than 1700 family members of slain police officers on a trip to Disney World.
Snowball Express was started in 2006 after Sinise fulfilled a fallen soldier’s wish to take his kids to Disney World. “The important ingredient is that these kids meet each other and they know they’re not alone,” Sinise said. “They make friendships that last a lifetime.”
Families from over 87 cities around the world got a chance to visit the “most magical place on Earth” along with a surviving parent or guardian.
It is the 14th anniversary of the Snowball Express and Sinise ensured that the families get to have an amazing holiday as part of the healing process. “I’ve gotten to know a lot of these families,” Sinise said. “I love them and I want to just do something to help them through.”
After donning the role of a Vietnam veteran in Forrest Gump, Sinise has immersed himself in caring for veterans and their families. He has joined with the Disabled American Veterans organization, and created the Lt. Dan Band, which travels around the world to entertain US troops abroad.
Many celebrities and dignitaries have come forward to appreciate all that Gary Sinsie is doing for the families of fallen soldiers, “Thank you for all the things you have done for our men and women who have served our nation,” retired four-star Army Gen. Colin Powell said in the video. “Not only what you’ve done for them but for their children, what you’ve done for their families, what you’ve done to help them rebuild their lives.”
Tim Allen, Jay Leno, Patricia Heaton and Robert DeNiro also appear in the video and actor Tom Hanks, who played alongside Sinise in Forrest Gump, appeared at the end of the video with an enthusiastic: “Thanks, Lt. Dan!”