A lot of celebrities become immersed in their stardom once they’re discovered. But how many fans have wondered what they did before they were discovered? Well, a surprising amount of them actually had military careers before becoming famous!
Here are some celebrities with secret military pasts. And We’ll also specifically explore why Charles Bronson’s military career has never been mentioned!
Charles Bronson was born in Ehrenfeld, Pennsylvania and barely spoke any English in his household. His friends often said it sounded like he wasn’t from the United States even though he was a U.S. citizen.
In his prime was an incredible actor. He started his acting career in the 1950s, and by the 1970s, he was a household name.
Unsurprisingly, Bronson would have rather left his military career behind him and in the past. War is almost always traumatizing for the soldiers that take part in it, especially if they fought in the largest war to ever happen.
That’s the war that Bronson fought in when he was drafted, but there’s more to his military past than meets the eye.
Bronson’s family was very poor when he grew up. He once recounted how he had to wear his sister’s dress to school because they had no other clothing. When he graduated high school, he found work as a miner in his hometown before he was drafted to serve in the army in 1943 – at the height of World War II.
But Bronson did a lot while he spent time in the war, much more than the average soldier.
As Bronson worked for the U.S. Military as a soldier, he was trained as a member of a B-29 Bomber flying on board as the gunner. He gained experience with the crew as he flew 25 combat missions in the South Pacific over Japanese territory.
By the end of the war, he received a Purple Heart for his injuries in service.
After returning home when World War II had ended, Bronson started finding work anywhere he could. After a few random jobs here and there, he finally fell in with a theatrical group.
From the theatrical group, he finally started to act in small roles, until in 1954 with his first film credit.
Adam Driver was recently gained a lot of traction in the film industry with his portrayal of Kylo Ren in the newest trilogy of Star Wars films. But he has been more open about his military background than others.
Driver was actually a marine before his film career. It takes a lot of discipline and courage to be a marine. Though Driver was never actually deployed, he still trained like every other soldier by his side.
Did you know that James Blunt had quite a prominent role as a military man before he ended up being the musician that captivated our hearts?
Blunt’s tuition was funded by the British military. In return, he had to serve in the army for a minimum of 4-years.
Jimi Hendrix is often praised as one of the greatest musicians of all time. He revolutionized the way the electric guitar is played even today. But before he was at Woodstock setting his guitar on fire, he was actually in the military.
After being found in a stolen car for a second time, he was given the option to serve in the military or go to jail. He chose the former.
It would seem strange that a hip-hop artist could have been in the military before their career picked up, but that’s exactly what happened with Ice T. After finishing up high school in 1979, he went straight into the military.
After four years of service, Ice T left the army to release his first album, “Rhyme Pays.”
George Carlin was an amazing stand-up comedian that wasn’t afraid to speak his mind. He’s said to be ahead of his time in many aspects. But before his time on stage talking about the “words you can’t say on the radio,” he was actually in the military.
He served as a radio technician and was court marshaled three times!
Of all the people on this list, Bob Ross definitely doesn’t seem like the military type. Funnily enough, he was in the military for a staggering 20 years before picking up his paintbrush.
He worked his way up to drill sergeant, and by the time his service was over, he vowed to never shout again.
Elvis Presley was one of the first to commercialize “rock n’ roll” and bring it to a wider audience. He kept good relationships with the government, unlike many groups at the time, and became something of an icon to look up to.
In 1958 Elvis decided to join the military and complete a full service of two years.
Between 1992 and 2013, Rob Riggle served in the U.S. military and deployed in four countries, including Afghanistan. He was mainly a public affairs officer during his time in the military and got an honorable discharge.
From there, he picked up the acting career we know and love today.
Morgan Freeman is prominently known for his acting career. His iconic voice is recognizable anywhere since he played God in “Bruce Almighty.” But in 1955, he served as a radio technician in the military until he was discharged in 1959.