10 celebrities who served in the military

These famous people also made valuable contributions to Uncle Sam

FILE - Tony Bennett arrives at the 60th annual Grammy Awards in New York on Jan. 28, 2018. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File) (Evan Agostini, 2018 Invision)

In the U.S., celebrities and the military have gone together in history as well as peanut butter and jelly.

Whether serving in the armed forces was a prelude to stardom, or fame had already been achieved before starting a military stint, there has been a rich history of celebrities who have served.

Here are 10 notable celebrities with military backgrounds.

1. Bea Arthur

Photo by Nick Valinote/FilmMagic (Getty Images)

The famous actress from the TV series “The Golden Girls,” Arthur served in the Marines, where she drove military trucks and served as a typist, according to military.com.

Arthur enlisted in 1943 at the age of 21.

2. Yogi Berra

Yogi Berra. (Getty Images)

The former baseball Hall of Famer was involved in the Normandy invasion, where he helped man a Navy support craft that threw rockets on Omaha Beach toward German forces, according to history.com. Berra later in the war was grazed by a German bullet in Marseilles.

3. Tony Bennett

Singer Tony Bennett performs at the Statue of Liberty Museum opening celebration in New York on May 15, 2019. Bennett has been diagnosed with Alzheimers disease but the diagnosis hasn't quieted his legendary voice. The singers wife and son reveal in the latest edition of AARP The Magazine that Bennett was first diagnosed in 2016. The magazine says he endures increasingly rarer moments of clarity and awareness. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

Before becoming a famous singer, Bennett served in the Army in France and Germany, where he helped clean up after the Battle of Bulge and searched for Nazi stragglers in German towns that were bombed out, according to History.com.

4. Humphrey Bogart

Photo by Pictorial Parade/Archive Photos. (Getty Images)

The famed movie star joined the Navy in 1918, where he primarily worked on the ship that carried U.S. troops back home after the end of World War I, according to military.com. Bogart was eventually discharged in June 1919.

5. George Carlin

Photo by Kevin Statham/Redferns (Getty Images)

The popular comedian and host of the first-ever episode of “Saturday Night Live,” Carlin was in the Air Force, where he spent more time moonlighting as a disc jockey at a nearby radio station than anything else, according to military.com. Carlin eventually was court-martialed three times and given a general discharge.

6. Johnny Cash

In this Sept. 2, 1995, file photo, singer Johnny Cash performs during his segment of the Concert for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan, File) (AP1995)

The legendary country singer served time in the Air Force, where he was stationed for a majority of his four-year tenure in Germany, according to military.com. He served as an intercept operator with the Air Force’s Security Service.

7. Ice T

Photo by NDZ/Star Max/GC Images (Getty Images)

His real name is Tracy Lauren Marrow, but regardless, the rapper and actor served four years in the Army, according to military.com.

Primarily stationed in Hawaii, he was a squad leader at Schofield Barracks.

8. Morgan Freeman

Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images for the Critics Choice Association (Getty Images)

The legendary actor joined the Air Force in 1955, where he trained as a fighter pilot, according to military.com. Freeman eventually left the Air Force in 1959.

9. Elvis Presley

circa 1975: American popular singer and film star Elvis Presley (1935 - 1977), to his fans the undisputed 'King of Rock 'n' Roll'. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

Presley actually joined the Army in 1958 already a famous commodity with hit songs, and movie and TV appearances, according to military.com.

Presley eventually served in Germany, where he met his wife, Priscilla. He was honorably discharged in 1960.

10. Jimmy Stewart

Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Hulton Archive (Getty Images)

Just like Presley, Stewart entered the Army when he was already a star. Stewart eventually became a squadron commander in England, according to history.com, leading bombing raids over Germany and France.

This story was first published in 2021. It has since been updated.

About the Author:

Keith is a member of Graham Media Group's Digital Content Team, which produces content for all the company's news websites.