COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) – Actor Gary Sinise, who played Lieutenant Dan in the movie “Forrest Gump” and Detective Mac Taylor on “CSI: NY,” has made a large donation to help first responders who rescued people and fought the most destructive wildfire in Colorado history.

Black Forest Fire Chief Bob Harvey choked back tears Tuesday while accepting the nearly $60,000 check he says his volunteer department desperately needs.

CBS4 partner KKTV-TV reports the largely volunteer fire department lost many expensive pieces of equipment this summer, including radios and fire hoses, while battling Black Forest Fire northeast of Colorado Springs. Those will all be replaced.

“It’s crucial to expanding our services,” said Harvey.

The donation also includes a new addition to the fleet — a standing track vehicle that will help build firelines faster with fewer people.

The money comes from the Gary Sinise Foundation, which develops programs designed to entertain, educate, inspire, strengthen and build veteran, military and first-responder communities. Sinise sent a video message saying he was “honored” to present the donation.

The fire in June killed two people, burned about 22 square miles and destroyed more than 480 homes. The cause is still being investigated.

LINK: Gary Sinise Foundation

Wildfire Resources

– Visit’s Wildfire Resources section.

– Read recent Wildfire stories.

Wildfire Photo Galleries

– See images from the most destructive wildfires (Black Forest, Waldo Canyon, High Park and Fourmile) and largest wildfire (Hayman) in Colorado history.


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