Two TV game shows honoring veterans this week
LOS ANGELES >> "Jeopardy!" and "Wheel of Fortune" aren't playing around when it comes to marking Veterans Day.
The game shows, in cooperation with the veterans' support campaign Got Your 6, are using this week's episodes to spotlight those who have served.
On "Wheel of Fortune," all of the contestants have been in a branch of the U.S. military. And host Pat Sajak, an Army veteran, joined with other vets and show presenter Vanna White to tape a series of public service announcements.
The PSAs that will air during "Wheel of Fortune" aim to counter stereotypes and myths about veterans, said Army vet and Got Your 6 spokeswoman Kate Hoit.
Sajak said he was thrilled to "honor others who have served their country."
"Particularly in this all-volunteer era, it's easy to forget about the sacrifices made by them and their families," he said.
Sajak joined the Army in 1968 and served for three years. That included an 18-month stint in Saigon that he said was largely spent as a U.S. Armed Forces radio DJ.
On the "Jeopardy!" episode airing Wednesday, Veterans Day, "Modern Family" star Eric Stonestreet will present a veterans-related category for the quiz show's contestants.
Sajak and "Jeopardy!" host Alex Trebek, who has participated in more than a dozen USO trips over the years, also taped a PSA for Got Your 6 "Storytellers" events, one held in New York last week and one set for Tuesday in Los Angeles.
Held in partnership with the TV academy, "Storytellers" provides a showcase for the talents and ideas of those who served, according to Got Your 6, which derives its name from the military phrase, "Got your back."
Got Your 6, as described on its website, brings together nonprofit, government and Hollywood partners to help veterans become community leaders and to foster understanding of their value through popular culture.
Rob Gordon, president of Got Your 6's parent organization Be The Change, said in a statement that the campaign was grateful to "Wheel" and "Jeopardy!" for showing how the entertainment industry can help "normalize depictions" of those who served.
"Our veterans are civic assets for the nation, not broken heroes, and we so value gaining access to a national television platform that helps us deliver that message directly to millions of Americans," Gordon said.