Why Did Adam Driver Join the Military After 9/11?

Some fans may not know, but Star Wars star Adam Driver was a Marine. As a matter of fact, the actor decided to join the military after 9/11. However, Adam Driver was discharged from the Marines following an accident — and he regretted not being deployed. So why did Adam Driver join the military, and what does he have to say about his time in the organization? 

Why did Adam Driver join the military?

Adam Driver joined the military after 9/11
Adam Driver joined the military after 9/11 | Rich Fury/Getty Images

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For Adam Driver, the Marines were a way for him to give back to his country following the events of 9/11. When Adam Driver joined the military, he felt the need to protect. 

“September 11 happened and all my friends were like, ‘Let’s join the military’, and I was the only one who actually did,” said Driver, per U.S. Veterans Magazine.

Adam Driver specified that joining the military was not about Muslims, and that he felt no racial or religious impetus in his decision.

“It wasn’t against Muslims. It was: We were attacked. I want to fight for my country against whoever that is,” Adam Driver said of joining the Marines, per the New Yorker.

So why did Adam Driver join the Marines, out of all the military branches? For the star, part of it was about the challenge. 

“They kind of got me with their whole ‘We don’t give you signing bonuses. We’re the hardest branch of the armed forces. You’re not going to get all this cushy sh*t that the Navy or the Army gives you. It’s going to be hard,’” he said.

Why was Adam Driver discharged from the Marines?

'Star Wars' actor Adam Driver at Comic-Con International 2015. Fans wonder why Adam Driver joined the Marines
‘Star Wars’ actor Adam Driver at Comic-Con International 2015 | Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images

When Adam Driver joined the military, he expected to be deployed alongside his squadmates. Instead, the star wound up getting medically discharged from the service. Adam Driver’s Marines stint ended after a mountain biking accident made deployment impossible. 

The star broke his sternum during the incident, but was desperate to deploy alongside his friends. He asked them to take him back into training and deploy anyway.

“I had convinced my battalion to deploy me in spite of the injury, but when they put me back into training, I wound up injuring it worse,” he told Broadway.

“They had gone and done the thing that we trained to do together. And I felt like a piece of sh*t,” Driver said of being medically discharged before deployment. 

Adam Driver misses some aspects of the military, including the camaraderie. 

“You miss the rigor, the discipline, the camaraderie … I think you become very aware, probably more than average people your age, that we’re all going to die. You’re aware of your own mortality, and also of how much you can accomplish in a day. Time is precious, and you don’t want to waste it,” said Driver, per U.S. Veterans Magazine.

Star helps create arts program for military

Adam Driver greets fans at the 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' premiere
Adam Driver greets fans at the ‘Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’ premiere | Rich Fury/Getty Images

Adam Driver and wife Joanne Tucker have started the Arts in the Armed Forces program. Adam Driver’s decision to join the military left him with an appreciation for their service, and a desire to give back. 

“AITAF’s mission is to use the powerful shared experience of the arts to start conversations between military and civilian, service member and family member, and the world of the arts adn the world of practical action,” reads the organization’s “about” page.

“Our core programs include play readings, film screenings, and panel discussions with professional artists for all branches of the armed forces at U.S. Military installations domestically and abroad — all free of charge,” the organization adds.