Tom Hanks is leading the charge to help our "Hidden Heroes"

Eye on Veterans
June 02, 2019 - 5:31 pm
The Today Shows May 23rd episode highlighted Hidden Heroes, an Elizabeth Dole Foundation program focusing on caregiver families.

Photo courtesy Elizabeth Dole Foundation

Celebrities, for better or worse, get massive amounts of attention. Sometimes the famous use their powers for good, redirecting the attention they garner to help shine a spotlight on causes they care about. Whether it's posting on social media or making an appearance on television, a big name can mean big things for a non-profit like Elizabeth Dole Foundation's Hidden Heroes campaign.

And boy, do they have one of the biggest names working to bring attention and assistance to military caregiver families: Tom Hanks.

But the two-time Oscar winner isn't just lending his name, or sending out the occasional tweet. The man who played Forrest Gump has, quite appropriately, been running full speed as the campaign's chair for the last two years.

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"When we met with Tom and we shared the story he jumped out of his chair and went up to a whiteboard," said Dole Foundation CEO Steve Schwab on the Eye on Veterans radio show. "He started to really literally draw up the logo. He said 'you need to come up with a campaign that's gonna rally support' and Senator Dole has always called these people hidden heroes and he said 'that's your campaign.'"

Yes, Tom Hanks came up with both the logo and campaign name for Hidden Heroes. He's also brought other big names into the fold such as Grammy winner Sheryl Crow and NBC's Savannah Guthrie. On May 23rd, Hanks, Crow, and Senator Dole joined Guthrie on a special edition of the Today Show focused on Hidden Heroes. 

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So why is Hanks so involved, and invested, in getting the word out about the campaign? According to Schwab, the actor knows his presence brings attention, and fully believes that once more people learn what's been sacrificed by caregiver families they'll be just as passionate about helping them as the Hidden Heroes team is.

"Five and a half million caregivers have given up pretty much their lives to help our wounded warriors," Schwab said. "And there's no end in sight, and they need our help."

You can hear the full interview with Dole Foundation CEO Steve Schwab below.

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