AKRON, OH—Today, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) helped secure the Bronze Star and several other military honors earned by SSgt. Christopher Nathan Barna, an Iraq and Afghanistan veteran who was raised in Novelty and lives in Akron. Brown’s staff worked with the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) and the U.S. Army to track down the overdue medals.
“The world is safer because of the courage of veterans like Staff Sergeant Barna,” Brown said. “Just like his grandfather in World War II, he selflessly answered the call to duty to help spread democracy. We owe each our gratitude. For his service, Mr. Barna earned these medals, including the distinguished Bronze Star.”
Barna was presented the medals by his grandfather, Nick Arno, a World War II Marine Veteran and Purple Heart recipient. Barna joined the Army Reserves in 2007 and was trained as a psychological operations specialist. He served a tour in Iraq in 2008 and in Afghanistan in 2012. He was honorably discharged in January 2013 with the rank of Staff Sergeant.
Brown was represented at the Summit County Veterans Service Commission (VSC) by Laura Pechaitis, his office’s Senior Constituent Advocate. Also honoring the veterans at today’s ceremony was Director of the Summit County VSC, Larry Moore.
Brown is the Co-Chair of the Senate Air Force Caucus and is a member of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee. He is the only Ohio Senator to serve a full term on the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee and is an original cosponsor of the VOW to Hire Heroes Act, which offers tax credits to employers who hire unemployed veterans and provides job retraining assistance to veterans between 35 and 60 years of age.
Ohio veterans and the family members of deceased veterans may request military records and medals by contacting Senator Brown’s Cleveland office at (216) 522-7272, or by visiting the “Constituent Services” section of Brown’s website at brown.senate.gov.
Below is a list of award recipients from today’s event: