Celebrities help honor troops at Fort Hood

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by CLARA TUMA / KVUE News

kvue.com

Posted on December 11, 2009 at 6:54 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 11 at 7:16 PM

A month after a mass shooting killed 13 people at Fort Hood, celebrities such as actor Gary Sinese helped honor troops at the post Friday during a carnival and concert called Community Strong.

Sinese joined others such as comedian Dana Carvey, rapper Chamillionaire, singer Nick Jonas of the Jonas Brothers and the Zak Brown band in thanking troops at the world's largest Army post.

"We want to make sure that our troops around the world and their families know we care about them and we're not going to forget about them when things like this happen," said Sinese, who makes frequent visits to honor troops both at home and overseas.

Chamillionaire said he was honored to perform at Community Strong, and says he owes much of his success to support from the troops.

"There was a time when I wasn't selling to any military bases," he said. "Then, when I started selling to military bases I started getting so much in sales that I couldn't even keep up. I had to get my family, everybody to help me start shipping. I started realizing the power of the support from troops and people who were deployed and people who were supporting my music. I feel like they were the people that were responsible for helping me get to where I got.

"I just want to say thanks to people that supported me all these years, and that's why I'm glad I could come and actually kind of pay them back for supporting me," Chamillionaire said.

Jonas, who appeared without his brothers, said he visited with children whose parents are the military Friday morning. He said he was trying "just to bring some encouragement and put a smile on their faces."

"I'm honored to be here, and I want to thank everyone for all they do to keep us safe everyday," Jonas said.

Carvey said he, too, was honored to be a part of Community Strong.

"The men and women who actually do this and go on the front lines and put themselves in harm's way, I'm so in awe of them, so completely and utterly in awe of them," Carvey said. "I got paid a ridiculous amount of money to put on a wig and do a funny voice. the only thing I can take away from this is just gratitude and humility, because because without the United States military the world is just not as nice a place, and I just think they're true heroes."

Carvey said he thought anything else he could say would end up sounding like a Hallmark card.

"With the tragedy that happened and all the emotions swirling around, and that we're going to surge into Afghanistan and everything, it just feels like there's something in the air that you want to be a part of it," Carvey said.

At the carnival, soldiers said they appreciated the carnival and concert.

"After what's happened, everybody needs some way of just relaxing and forgetting about it," said Staff Sgt. Bernard Kintoki. "It helps us escape the pain."

PFC Michael Roe brought his wife, Katrina, and infant daughter to the carnival.

"I think it's fantastic," he said. "It'll help us with moving along. It's really good to get everybody together, just enjoying the day and bringing all the units together. It really  helps in the healing process.

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