I recently received a very nice letter from Sue Rebar, the CEO and founder of the Welcome Home Troops organization, thanking me for my participation at the Celebrity Golf Tournament Gala at the Canyon Gate Country Club where I entertained them with my Las Vegas show, Sinatra Forever and it started me thinking about the importance of recognizing and supporting the efforts of our troops and those that serve and protect, not only on designated holidays, but every day of the year.
I began my service in the Navy April 29, 1974, attending boot camp in Great Lakes, IL before serving on the USS Miller, a Knox-class destroyer escort named for Dorie Miller, a cook noted for his bravery during the attack on Pearl Harbor. My time with the navy, especially aboard this ship, left me with many unforgettable stories on every scale of emotions, but most of all, it engrained in me an unwavering respect for our military personnel and anyone who serves to protect us.
I’ve performed at the Dry Heat Classic, a celebrity golf tournament that has raised almost a million dollars for The Michael Finney Foundation, which supports numerous charities by giving back to children, fifteen of the seventeen years they’ve been in existence. Like the Welcome Home Troops team, they recognize the importance of helping those that serve via families.
The certificate of appreciation from the Welcome Hope Troops team will hold a special place in my heart not for the work I’ve contributed, but for the job they do every day. And I see how necessary that work is every time I watch the news.
It’s impossible to list all the charities I’ve supported throughout my career and I’m proud to say that I’ve done this unreservedly, knowing how vital these organizations are to the well being of our country. “Giving back” is my way of continuing to be of service to this nation.