The Proud Protectors: 20 of the Most Memorable Veteran Day Characters

November 11, 2019 9 Comments

Today is a special day. Today, the United States honors the members of the military on Veterans Day. I don’t have or know anyone close to me that serves or has served in any of the branches of service, but this doesn’t stop me from appreciating and respecting what they do to keep the Home front safe. Today, in some small fashion, I want to acknowledge this through my sincere appreciation to the real life men and women who wear the uniform, and have some fun by spotlighting ‘favorite Veteran Day characters’ on this meaningful day.

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There’s something about a story with a solid military character, isn’t there? I’ve seen several that made a lasting impression, while others are less conspicuous. On the list are characters you’ll recognize by name, and others you might wonder why they are even mentioned. But in part, this is my goal. I want to spotlight some you know and maybe, introduce a few you don’t.

With no further preamble, let’s have a look.

The Proud Protectors: 20 of the Most Memorable Veteran Day Characters

(Disclosure: this post does contain affiliate links; if you buy anything through these links, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no extra cost to you. Thank you to anyone who makes a purchase through these links. Read the disclosure page for details.)


1: Jim Avery

Where you Know him From: Through Waters Deep, by Sarah Sundin

Thoughts: All I remember about this guy is that he makes a lasting impression, and he looks dashing in a uniform. Find the book on Amazon.

2: ‘The Brave’ Company

Where you Know them From: NBC’s The Brave

Thoughts: Sadly, this show didn’t last long, at all. But what we did see (eight or ten episodes, I think) I quite liked. The company that made up this tight-knit special ops unit were easy to like, and I appreciated that this one has a kind of “rawness” to it by being more about missions than inter-team drama (which I’m sure would have changed had the show continued). Find the show on Amazon Video.

3: Chris Dempsey

Where you Know him From: Once Upon a Christmas Miracle (TV Movie)

Find the Hallmark film on Amazon Video.

4: Kasey Fairing

Where you Know her From: Wild Montana Skies by Susan May Warren

Thoughts: I wish I remembered this book better, but I’m 99.9% sure I liked it, and one of the big reasons why is Kasey’s character, who happens to be former military. Find the book on Amazon.

5: Leroy Jethro Gibbs

Where you Know him From: NCIS (CBS TV Show)

favorite veteran day characters

Thoughts: I mean, really what can be said about this character? For 17 – or is it 18 now? – years, he’s been a solid and reliable character on your TV screens. He’s a protector, leader and when need be, yes, even the comforter. Find this TV show on Amazon Video.

6: The ‘JAG’ Office

Where you Know them From: JAG (CBS TV Show)

Thoughts: They may be court room military service men and women, but goodness… do I adore all of these characters. I binged the entire series years ago, and to this day, it’s still a favorite. Harm, Mac and Co. are just that memorable. Find this TV show on Amazon Video.

7: John Lawson

Where you Know him From: True to You, by Becky Wade

Thoughts: Love this character so much. Plus, the way he meets the book-living heroine is just too perfect. Find the book on Amazon

8: Megan Leavey

Where you Know her From: Meaghan Leavy (Feature Film)

favorite veteran day characters

Thoughts: It’s been a while since I watched this film, but it’s an emotional, based on a true story about a woman who works to be reunited with her service dog in their respective retirement. Find this on Amazon Video.

9: Pete ‘Maverick’ Mitchell

Where you Know him From: Top Gun (1986)

Thoughts: Is it odd to include on character I haven’t met? I don’t know, but will admit I’ve heard about him (as Maverick) and seen the movie around – a lot. In my little (I didn’t do much because I wanted to include the people I could think of) research I did for today’s list, I did see his name on at least one list. Now the question, should I watch Top Gun? Find this on Amazon Video.

10: Alison Ng

Where you Know her From: Aloha

Thoughts: Like some on this list, this character is more a “fun” addition since this film a: wasn’t well received and b: she doesn’t make a lasting impression in the way a TV show character does. That said, I remember loving the character, and liking how Emma Stone plays her. Find the film on Amazon Video.

11: Kevin O’Brien

Where you Know him From: Chesapeake Shores (TV Show)

Chesapeake Shores: Season 2

Thoughts: Ok, so for the  majority of this show (fourth season just completed), Kevin is not in the military any longer. That said, everything about his character is still reflective of his service. Find the Hallmark TV show on Amazon Video.

12: Dru Porter

Where you Know her From: Her One and Only, by Becky Wade

Thoughts: I wish I remembered this story better than I actually do, but what I do recall is this character is all about the fierce sassiness, and we’re all here for it. Find the book on Amazon.

13: Steve Rogers aka Captain America

Where you Know him From: The Marvel Cinematic Universe

favorite character traits

Thoughts: Yeah, we all knew I wouldn’t make a list like this without Steve Rogers, right? Love this character so much. Find Captain America: The First Avenger on Amazon Video.

14: Jack Reacher

Where you Know him From: the Jack Reacher novels and Film Adaptations

Thoughts: I mean, yes, the dude is quite mysterious, but also… that’s why we like him, right? Find this one on Amazon Video.

15: Sal ‘Falcon’ Russo

Where you Know him From: Falcon, by Ronie Kendig

Thoughts: Another character I don’t remember well (either because it’s been a long time since I read the book or I don’t have a good memory), but I do remember the series in terms of the covers, and just the idea that I did like all three of the books in the series Falcon is a part of. Find the book on Amazon.

16: Jack Ryan

Where you Know him From: the Jack Ryan novels by Tom Clancy + Film and TV adaptations

jack ryan: shadow recruit

Thoughts: In current times, Jack works as a CIA analyst but prior to this, he was a proud military member, and now, he kicks butt working (even if it is always by accident) as a field agent. Find the film [‘Shadow Recruit’] on Amazon Video.

17: Colin Shaw

Where you Know him From: All For Love (TV Movie)

Thoughts: I’ve said it before, I love this movie and character. Plus, it helps that his counterpart is a sassy, but military factually challenged author. Makes everything more fun! Find the Hallmark romance on Amazon Video.

18: Mac Taylor

Where you Know him From: CSI: NY (CBS TV Show)

Thoughts: Yeah, I know I’ve mentioned Mac a time or two recently. When you decide to binge the now-cancelled CBS show (almost done with the final season), the characters in said binge-show tend to make an impression. Find the show on Amazon Video.

19: John Tyree

Where you Know him From: Dear John (novel by Nicholas Sparks and later, a film adaptation)

favorite veteran day characters

Thoughts: Channing Tatum’s John is the one character I remember fully liking in the adaptation. Much as I do appreciate the film’s end (because I’m all about the HEA), I don’t disagree with those who wanted someone better for him. Find this one [the film] on Amazon Video.

20: Alex Wheatley

Where you Know him From: Safe Haven (novel by Nicholas Sparks and later, a film adaptation)

Thoughts: Yes, I do have two Nicholas Sparks characters in a row. To be honest, I don’t remember Alex’s military service really being a “thing” in the film adaptation (was this even a thing in the film?) with Josh Duhamel, but the novel certainly discusses it at greater length, and it’s one of my favorite parts about it. The way Alex is – good, kind, noble – is largely due to his service. Find this one [the film] on Amazon Video.


On this Veterans Day 2019, it’s with a grateful heart that I say thank you to each and every person who take up the mission to protect this land we call home. Without you, and the sacrifices you make daily, none of us would have a voice or be able to walk through life with security and the comfort of safety.


Have you met any of these characters; do you like or dislike them? Who are some of your most ‘favorite Veterans Day characters’? Comment all the thoughts below!

The Proud Protectors: 20 of the Most Memorable Veteran Day Characters. Talking about a few of the military characters I best like. #VeteransDay #Characters #List Click To Tweet

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About Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

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9 Comments

  • Kirsty November 11, 2019 at 3:08 PM

    This is a FANTASTIC list; I love every character on it, some more than others of course (Jack Reacher, John Tyree, Kevin O’Brien, Chris Dempsey, and Gibbs).

    My own personal list would definitely include Jake Porter (A Love Like Ours), Clay Spenser (SEAL Team), Kimball Cho (Mentalist), John Reese (Person of Interest), Henry McCord (Madam Secretary), and Kensi Blye (NCIS:LA), just to start with ?

    • Rissi JC November 23, 2019 at 1:44 PM

      Hi, Kristy!! Apologies for the reply delay. I was getting better at replies and now have fallen behind. Again. ;)

      LOVE so many you mention including Jake, Cho and of course, Reese. I never did finish Person of Interest because the way it ends makes me sad. So many excellent protectors in fiction, and it always makes me all the more grateful for our real-life heroes. :)

  • Brittaney B November 11, 2019 at 3:48 PM

    Love this idea for a Veteran’s Day post! Great list.

    • Rissi JC November 23, 2019 at 1:45 PM

      Brittaney, hi! Apologies for the reply delay. Thanks so much for reading. :)

  • Sarah Sundin November 11, 2019 at 4:04 PM

    I am so honored! And Jim Avery is ducking his head and trying to get out of the limelight :) Thank you, Rissi!

    • Rissi JC November 23, 2019 at 1:47 PM

      Sarah, hi! My sincere apologies for the reply delay. Thank YOU so much for stopping by, and for creating such amazing historical fiction with upstanding characters like Jim. They’re always a joy to read. :)

  • Greg Hill November 12, 2019 at 9:24 PM

    I love that Steve Rogers is on here, and Jack ryan too. :) Fabulous topic, by the way!

    • Rissi JC November 23, 2019 at 2:47 PM

      Greg, apologies for the reply delay! I too love to see Steve Rogers noted (anywhere…!) and always did like the character of Jack Ryan. Thank you for reading. :)

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