As in the first book, Gump stumbles through important US events in the 1980s and early 1990s. He plays football for the New Orleans Saints, sells encyclopedias door-to-door, works on a pig farm, and helps develop the infamous New Coke. He accidentally crashes the Exxon Valdez, helps destroy the Berlin Wall, and fights in Operation Desert Storm. He meets many celebrities, including Colonel Oliver North, the Ayatollah Khomeini, John Hinckley, Jim Bakker, Ivan Boesky, Ronald Reagan, Saddam Hussein, Bill and Hillary Clinton, and Tom Hanks.
The sequel s storyline keeps to the storyline of the immensely successful 1994 film version of Forrest Gump, by killing off both Jenny and Forrest s mother, neither of whom died in the novel.