Martinez, an Iraq war veteran, was called up by Panetta this week to congratulate him for his victory over Rob Kardashian and Ricki Lake to grab the Dancing With The Stars 2011 glitter ball trophy. That was when he was invited to the Pentagon to meet with Panetta in person.
The Defense Secretary said that Martinez is a testament to the strength and resilience of our wounded service men and women and invited him for a personal meeting in Washington DC.
Veteran JR Martinez suffered 40 percent burns when his military Humvee struck a landmine in 2003. His injuries were life threatening and he will remain permanently scarred. However, since then, Martinez carved out an acting career for himself in All My Children.
Martinez has said that competing on Dancing with the Stars has helped him show the world who he really he is and described his DWTS win as one of the great accomplishments of his life.
JR was so happy with his dancing victory that he joked that he wants to sleep with his mirror ball trophy.