Epiphone Signature artist Tommy Thayer of KISS helped to raise a whopping $1.4 million for the Oregon Military Museum during a fund raiser held in Portland, Oregon this week. Thayer also auctioned off the Epiphone Les Paul Custom PRO he performed with for $20,000. Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, and Eric Singer of KISS gave a surprise performance at the end of the evening as well.  Proceeds will benefit the expansion of the Oregon Military Museum which will be named after Thayer's father, retired Brigadier General James B. Thayer. 

In an interview with Forbes, Thayer noted that his father received the Bronze and Silver Star serving in World War II and his platoon discovered and liberated  Nazi concentration camps in Austria.  During the war, Gene Simmons' parents were believed to have been held at camps that Thayer's platoon helped to liberate.

“Gene’s mother’s life was spared at the age of 14, but what she went through makes this effort even more personal for all of us in the band,” said Tommy Thayer. “The band as it is today, all of us are very close and very supportive of each other’s charitable and philanthropic efforts, and especially this one. We have supported the military and the veterans throughout our tours in various ways.”  Read our classic interview with Tommy Thayer here and read more about the upcoming renovation of the Oregon Military Museum.  Congrats, Tommy from all your friends at Epiphone!