70+ Celebrities Who Were in the Military

Many famous American military veterans went on to have illustrious careers in the movie entertainment industry.Ā The Good, the Bad and the UglyĀ actor Clint Eastwood served in the US Army during the Korean War and almost died when he was involved in a plane crash. The plane landed in the ocean near Fort Ord, CA, and Eastwood was able to swim to safety. Some 40 years later, he won his first Oscar for directingĀ Unforgiven. Other prolific actors who have served in the military include Paul Newman, Morgan Freeman, and Chuck Norris.

Some surprising celebs also served in the military, including musicians and rocks stars. Grateful Dead guitarist Jerry Garcia joined the US Army, but left the military 9 months later to study at the Art Institute of San Francisco. Other well known celebrity vetsĀ include Tool front man Maynard James Keenan, comedian Drew Carey, and rapper Ice-T.

Oliver Stone served in the Vietnam War, andĀ madeĀ PlatoonĀ based on his experiences.

“Million Dollar Baby” director Clint Eastwood was drafted by the US Army during the Korean War.
Elvis Presley joined the US Army in 1958.
“Bucket List” Morgan Freeman served in the US Air Force.
Chuck Norris served in the US Airforce.
“Wheel of Fortune” host Pat Sajak served in the US Army during the Vietnam War.
Jimi Hendrix joined the Army after being caught stealing cars.Ā  He was given the choice of Army or prison.
Musician Marvin Gaye enlisted in the US Air Force, but was discharged after he faked a mental illness.
“Playboy” creator Hugh Hefner served as a military newspaper writer in the US Army.
Bill Cosby joined the Navy and worked as a hospital corpsman.
“Tonight Show” host Johnny Carson served in the Navy.
Mr. T served in the US Army.
Comedy director Mel Brooks served in the US Army during World War II.
Jazz musician John Coltrane enlisted in the Navy and played in their jazz band.
“Price is Right” host Bob Barker served as a fighter pilot in the US Navy during World War II.
Musician Johnny Cash enlisted in the US Air Force.
Musician Shaggy served in the US Marine Corps during the Gulf War.
Tom Selleck served in California’s National Guard.
Rapper Ice-T served in the US Army.
Sammy Davis Jr. served in the Army during World War II.
Actor Steve McQueen served in the US Marine Corps.
Entertainer MC Hammer served in the US Navy.
Author Ernest Hemingway used his served in World War I.
“Cool Hand Luke” star Paul Newman served in the Navy during World War II.
Richard PryorĀ served in the US Army for two years, but he spent most of that time in army prison.
Rapper Nate Dogg served in the US Marine Corps.
“Sopranos” actor Vincent Pastore served in the US Navy.
“Field of Dreams” actorĀ James Earl JonesĀ served in the Korean War.
Actor Mickey RooneyĀ served during World War II.
Talk show host Montel Williams served in the US Marine Corps.
“It’s a Wonderful Life” star James Stewart was rejected from the US Army when he was first drafted because he didn’t meet the weight requirement.Ā  He then worked out and bulked up and enlisted as a private.
William Sanderson served in the US Army.
Politician and professional wrestler Jesse Ventura served in the Navy during the Vietnam War.
“Casino” star Don Rickles served in the Navy during World War II.
“Planet of the Apes” star Charlton Heston served in the Air Force during World War II.
Kirk Douglas served in the Navy during World War II.
After 9/11, Girls actor Adam Driver joined the US Marine Corps. He served for two years and eight months before being medically discharged.
“M*A*S*H” star Jamie Farr served in the US Army.
Comedian Bob Newhart was drafted to the US Army during the Korean War.
Actor Henry Fonda served in the Navy during World War II.
Comedian Sinbad served in the US Air Force and regularly performed his stand-up routine during this time.
Actor Ernest BorgnineĀ served in the US Navy for a total of 10 years.
“Casablanca” star Humphrey Bogart served in the US Navy.
“Apocalypse Now” actor served in the US Army during the Korean War.
“French Connection” actor Gene Hackman served in the US Marine Corps.
“M*A*S*H” star Alan Alda was a member of the ROTC and served in the Army Reserves.
Author Kurt Vonnegut recalled his experience as a World War II POW in his novel “Slaughterhouse Five.”
“Odd Couple”Ā actor Jack LemmonĀ joined the Navy after college.
Actor Danny AielloĀ enlisted in the US Army.
Singer Harry Belafonte served in the Navy during World War II.
Actor Kris KristoffersonĀ joined the US Army and became a helicopter pilot.
“NYPD Blue” actor Dennis Franz was drafted to the US Army during the Vietnam War.
“Some Like it Hot” actor Tony Curtis served in the US Navy during World War II.
”Ā Star Trek” actor Leonard Nimoy served in the US Army.
Actor Brian Dennehy served in the US Marine Corps during the Vietnam War.
“The Notebook” actor James Garner joined the National Guard and served in the Army during the Korean War.
“Jaws” actor Roy Scheider served in the US Air Force.
Comedian Benny Hill served in the combined entertainment services division in World War II.
“Dick Van Dyke” star Carl Reiner served in the US Army during World War II.
“Andy Griffith Show” actor Don Knotts joined the US Army.
Grateful Dead co-founder Jerry Garcia served in the US Army.
“Best in Show” actor Fred Willard served in the US Army.
Baseball star Bob Feller served in the US Navy during World War II.
Actor Sidney PoitierĀ served in the US Army.
Rapper Canibus served in the US Army.
“Willy Wonka” star Gene Wilder was drafted into the US Army.
Comedian Drew Carey served in the US Marine Corps Reserve.
“Honeymooners” actor Art Carney served in World War II and was injured in the battle of Normandy.
Singer Tony Bennett was drafted to the US Army and served during World War II.
Actor J.R. Martinez served in the US Army and was severely burned on over 34 percent of his body.Ā  He began his acting career after his Army experience.
“City Slickers” actor Jack Palance served in the US Air Force during World War II.
Actor Sherman Hemsley served in the US Air Force.