Today at work another Soaring Valor, a partnership between the Museum and the Gary Sinise Foundation to bring WWII Veterans here, was scheduled. I walked in and talked with Dave about it for a little. He mentioned Gary Sinise would be there, and I freaked out a little. I told him I was going to talk to him this time because I swore to myself after squandering so many attempts to talk to celebrities I would do it the next time I saw one. This was my chance! Dave even offered to take our photo if given the chance, and I accepted.
We then experienced another Soaring Valor. I truly love being a part of this. Welcoming the Veterans really is something else. It truly is an honor and a privilege to get to do this. After they were all escorted into Solomon Victory Theater, Dave signaled to me. IT WAS GO TIME.
We walked in and looked for Gary in the preliminary room before Beyond All Boundaries; and we didn’t see him at first, so we walked out. Right as we were walking out I SAW HIM. I was like, “Wait, Dave. He was in there!” So we went back in. Then Dave was like, “Now’s a good time!” And I was like huh?, what?, oh no! But I found myself walking over to him, smiling way too big already. I walked up to him and started introducing myself because I was so nervous I couldn’t think of how to say, “Hello, Mr. Sinise.” I raised out my hand to shake his, and whispered, “Hi, I’m Marshall. I’m the Developer here.” To which he said, “I’m sorry, what was that?” I WAS SPEAKING TOO SOFTLY BECAUSE OF MY NERVOUSNESS. So I repeated what I said, and he heard me this time. Then I told him, “I’m a huge fan, and I think what your foundation is doing for these Veterans is amazing.” He was genuinely thankful, and I could tell he meant it and could see his appreciation. Then I asked, “Would it be okay if I took a picture with you?” He said, “Uh, sure.” Upon further reflection, I believe there were 2 reasons for this. 1) He didn’t want to get taken away from talking with these Veterans, which I totally get. 2) It was dark where we were. Luckily we found a little light and walked over there. Dave was there to snap the pic. I remember how big my smile felt while taking the picture. I told him thank you and shook his hand again.
After, my adrenaline was pumping, and I couldn’t wait to tell everyone! I’ve been so starstruck the past 2 times he was there, and I didn’t even meet him. This time I was HYPE. Anyway, that’s the story about how I nervously met Gary Sinise! He seemed like a genuinely nice person, and he’s doing amazing things for WWII Veterans.