Thousand Oaks, CA – On Thursday, April 7th, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village) presented Sgt. Emmet Cullen, a local high school teacher, with the Bronze Star Medal that he earned during his service in Iraq. Sergeant Emmet Cullen, now a Buena High School social studies teacher, received the Bronze Star with Valor for his exceptional actions in protecting his platoon and saving the lives of fellow servicemembers during his deployment in Mosul, Iraq in 2006.
The office of Congresswoman Julia Brownley worked with the United States Army to properly recognize Sergeant Cullen and obtain for him this award for his heroism and distinguished leadership and service to our nation. The Bronze Star with a “V” for valor is the fourth highest military honor. According to the U.S. Army, only 2,460 servicemembers in the United States Army have received this award for their service in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
“Sergeant Cullen is a true American hero for his distinguished service to our nation in battle, and for continuing that service to his community as a high school teacher in Ventura County,” said Congresswoman Julia Brownley. “I am honored to have helped ensure that he received his Bronze Star with Valor for his heroic service during Operation Iraqi Freedom.”
“Thank you Congresswoman Julia Brownley, for your offices outstanding service in helping to process this award through the Department of the Army some nine years after it was initially lost,” said Sergeant Cullen. “An extra special thanks to the Congresswoman for coming to Buena High School to highlight and bear witness to our many award winning programs! It means so much to me to be able to gather here with my family, friends, colleagues, and of course the students of Buena High School. I began my teaching career with this year’s graduating class of seniors as a young-faced and frightened student teacher not five years ago. Imagine that, a decorated combat veteran afraid of a class of 8th graders?”
“Emmet is so humble, he quietly goes about his day fighting for his students,” said Bobbi Powers, principal of Buena High School. “We are fortunate to have him as a teacher, and all are so proud of his service to our country and to share this special recognition with him.”
Here is the narrative that accompanied the award submission describing Sgt. Cullen’s actions that led to him receiving the Bronze Star with Valor.