Gary Sinise, Lt. Dan Band play benefit concert for local wounded warriors

SAN DIEGO - It was a star-studded show of support Saturday for local wounded warriors. Actor Gary Sinise and his Lt. Dan Band performed a benefit concert at the Naval Medical Center in Balboa Park for injured veterans and their families.

The concert was called the "Invincible Spirit Festival" and was rescheduled to Saturday after organizers were forced to cancel in the fall due to the government shutdown.

Sinise, who is most recognized for his role as Lieutenant Dan from the movie "Forrest Gump," played from his heart. He and his band comforted wounded warriors with uplifting songs, many of them about patriotism. 

"I always say we can never do enough for our veterans and those who serve our country," said Sinise. "But we can always do a little more and that's what we're trying to do."

Along with Sinise was celebrity chef Robert Irvine. 

"I've been cooking all morning," said Irvine. They made burgers and hot dogs for a few thousand veterans and their families.

Marine Staff Sgt. Jason Ross told 10News, "It makes me feel appreciated. It's nice to know that people want to come out and genuinely show their support."

In 2011, Ross lost both of his legs when he stepped on a bomb in Afghanistan. He says he is lucky to be alive. 

"The first thought was something bad happened," said Ross. "My brain was still trying to play catch up and I blacked out for a moment."

It is brave service members like Ross that motivate Sinise to do what he does.

"I have Vietnam veterans in my family and I remember all too well what happened when they came home from war," said Sinise. "That's a motivator for me. To just try to do what I can to ensure we don't forget."

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