“I Proudly Identify as a Veteran”: Tom Selleck Reflects on His Military Service

This Veterans Day, we’re honoring some of our favorite celebrities who have served in the US military.

Before becoming a household figure with his successful TV show MAGNUM P.I., Tom Selleck served in the National Guard as a sergeant in the United States Army infantry.

Before joining the Army, Selleck studied commerce at the University of Southern California before switching to acting at the advice of a theatrical instructor.

He began performing commercials and other little TV appearances before being hired by Twentieth Century Fox.

“I went to Fox on my own, with no frame of reference, no connection,” the BLUE BLOODS star recounted. “I’d never done a play before.”

I started at around $35 per week, and every six months, you were either fired or renewed. If your contract was renewed, you received a raise.

He returned to Fox after being drafted into the military, but was later let go. He went on to make several modest television appearances and commercials until getting the role of Thomas Magnum on the hit show MAGNUM P.I. in 1980.

“I’m a veteran; I’m proud of it,” the actor, who fought in the Vietnam War from 1967 to 1973, stated.

“We’re all brothers and sisters in that sense,” Selleck said of his comrades.

He remains committed to the military and has done multiple public service announcements in support of the National Guard.

“We learned a lesson as a country over time that we need to welcome our troops home,” Selleck went on to say. “Regardless of whether you have political problems with whatever mission they’re on, they just served, and we need to thank them for it.”

According to Movieguide®: The 78-year-old thanks God for his success.

After leaving the military, Selleck began his acting career, quickly landing the lead role on MAGNUM P.I. While his talent helped him get the part, Selleck attributes his success to God.

“A man’s heart directs his steps, but the Lord directs his heart,” he explained. “Therefore, humble yourselves under God’s mighty hand, that He may raise you up in due time.”

Selleck explained, “I try very hard to conduct myself in an ethical manner because that’s important to my stability now.” We live in a culture that is so focused on the individual. Nothing, according to the society, is more important than how you feel.

The Emmy-winning actor will also issue a memoir, “You Never Know,” in May 2024, which he describes as “personal but reserved” compared to the normal celebrity tell-all fare.

“I can tell you what it won’t be: it won’t be a score-settling exercise.” It’s not going to be about who I dated. There is some privacy, but I’m being quite candid about the personal impact everything has had on me,” he told Parade magazine.

More information on the upcoming memoir was recently revealed by Movieguide®:

From the basketball court at USC to a joyful accident, I discovered and then embraced the career I love. “It’s been a long, bumpy road filled with singles, home runs, and a lot of strikeouts,” Selleck said. “I figure it’s time to share the ride.”

A synopsis of the memoir states, “In his own voice and uniquely unpretentious style, the famed actor takes readers on his uncharted but serendipitous journey to the top in Hollywood, his temptations and distractions, his misfires and mistakes, and, over time, his well-earned success.” Along the way, he dispels a slew of myths and recounts dozens of never-before-told experiences from his personal and professional lives.

While tracking Selleck’s long journey to popularity, the memoir also highlights his friendships with A-list performers from a bygone era, such as Frank Sinatra and James Garner, who taught Selleck valuable life, acting, and celebrity lessons.

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