Angel Blog

Famous Veterans: I bet you didn’t know this person was a Veteran

As a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting and honoring our Military heroes, we find inspiration in the stories of those who have served their country with courage and then transitioned to careers in the public eye. In this blog, and in honor of Military Appreciation Month, we thought it would be fun to highlight a few notable famous Veterans who have bravely worn the uniform and then journeyed from the barracks to the big screen!

Rob Riggle

That’s right! This quirky actor known for his roles in “The Other Guys (2010)”, “21 Jump Street (2012)”, “Step Brothers (2008),” and many more, served in the United States Marine Corps. He joined in 1990 and served for nine years. He then joined the Reserve where he was a public affairs officer. After the attacks of September 11th, 2001, Riggle decided to join active duty once again and deployed to Afghanistan for two tours. After completing those two tours he returned to the Reserves and pursued his career in acting where he eventually starred in “Saturday Night Live,” “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby” and “The Daily Show.” He ended his Military career in 2013.

Rob Riggle is a true American hero and a living testament to what is possible. Being able to serve our amazing country for 23 years and still achieve that level of success in show business shows that he has is nothing short of incredible. If you want to read more about Rob Riggle and his Military story check out this article from

Adam Driver

That’s right! In case you didn’t know, the new age Star Wars main villain, Kylo Ren, served in the United States Marine Corps. Also known for other big hit movies such as Marriage Story (2019), BlacKkKlansman (2018), Paterson (2016), and many more, Adam Driver’s career really took off in the 2010s. Although he is known primarily for his big lead roles in movies, Adam never fails to mention his time in the service and how important it was for his life.

He joined in 2002 after graduating high school. His desire to serve was ignited after the September, 11th attacks in New York just one year before. He served for more than 2 years and had to be medically discharged after suffering from an injury to his sternum from a mountain biking accident. This resulted in him never being able to deploy to the Middle East. Something he would later speak on in his TED talk and regret not being able to do. The grit and tenacity that he developed while in the Marine Corps. was then applied to his acting career where he eventually became an extremely successful and famous Veteran.

Jimi Hendrix

A8WB9M JIMI HENDRIX – US rock musician in 1967

This is not a joke. Rock n’ Roll legend Jimi Hendrix served in the Army and enlisted in 1961. I bet you’re thinking to yourself “There’s no way he was a good soldier. Right?” And you would be absolutely correct! Jimi’s service was the result of having the choice of joining the Military or spending two years in prison due to stolen vehicle charges. He chose the Military and was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division stationed at Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

Reports of Hendrix’s performance as a soldier were nothing short of what you’d expect from the free-spirited hippie. He slept while on duty, required constant supervision, and wasn’t a particularly good marksman. An ankle injury during a parachute jump gave Hendrix the opportunity to leave the Military with an honorable discharge. Although he was no stellar Soldier, we appreciate everything Jimi has done for our country’s culture and music. In a way, he did give back, just in his own way.

Thank You To Our Veterans!

As we conclude our exploration of incredible famous Veterans who have also made their mark in the world of entertainment, we are reminded of the resilience, sacrifice, unwavering dedication, and diversity that characterizes the Military community. At Soldiers’ Angels, we remain committed to providing vital support and resources to Service Members, Veterans, and their families, ensuring they receive the assistance they deserve as they navigate the challenges of civilian life. If you’re a Service Member or Veteran, click here to learn how Soldiers’ Angels can support you.