MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. (Sept. 16) --
MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. (Sept. 16) –Gary Sinise and The Lt. Dan Band performed their final USO show of the year for Marines of Marine Corps Air Station New River and Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune on W.P.T. Hill Field on MCB Camp Lejeune, Sept.16.
Gary Sinise is well known for playing the role of Lt. Dan, Forrest Gump’s commanding officer in Vietnam, in the 1994 film “Forrest Gump.”
Sinise formed the band with Kimo Williams, a Vietnam veteran and guitar player in Chicago in 2004 and the band has been playing shows for troops with the USO ever since.
Before the show began, Brig. Gen. Thomas A. Gorry, Marine Corps Installations East commanding officer and Sgt. Maj. Ernest K. Hoopii, MCI-East sergeant major, spoke to the crowd about the Lt. Dan Band and the many programs and resources available to Marines.
“We are coming back from a decade of war and we just did the 9/11 ceremony and not everybody is adjusting evenly, but if you are having some difficulties, the base is here for you. We have tremendous amounts of support facilities and programs available and it’s there for you, just like today’s performance is here for you,” said. the general.
The main program that was highlighted for Marines to utilize was the DSTRESS line.
“We had a chance to be here a year ago and the Marine Expeditionary Force was gone and folks said ‘hey can you come back?’ and we etched in the calendar at that point in time. It’s just a real treat to be back, it’s a privilege being here,” said David J. McIntyre, president and CEO of TriWest Healthcare Alliance, one of the concert’s sponsors.
The band played a two-hour set of a variety of mixed music from all genres from classics to today’s modern hits.
“Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get with this band. We play a lot of different types of tunes. We are a cover band, we like to play a lot of different songs,” said Sinise.
During the show, Marines and their families sang and danced along with the band. While playing the Rascal Flatts version of Life is a Highway, Sinise asked for the children to join the band on stage and sing along.
“We love Marines. The band has been all over the world and we’ve done so many USO shows and various military charity shows I’ve lost track. The important thing is that you know that you’re appreciated and we care about what you are doing. We don’t take it for granted and we know how hard you’ve been working, over and over, for the past ten years. We are very grateful,” said Sinise. “Thank you so much for everything you do for our country we don’t take your sacrifices or your family’s sacrifices for granted.”