Lance Corporal Brian Vargas, US Marine Corps

Brian_2BrianBorn in San Francisco, California, Brian joined the Marine Corps immediately following high school and deployed to West Albar Province in Iraq with the 3rd Battalion 4th Marines Lima Company shortly thereafter. In 2007, while conducting combat operations in the midst of a firefight, he was shot by an enemy sniper – an event that altered his life.

The shots hit Brian in his left hand and right side of his face, rendering him unconscious. After being evacuated stateside and receiving months of rehabilitation for a traumatic brain injury, he medically retired in 2009. However, instead of letting his injuries get the best of him, Brian has pushed forward undaunted.

A go-getter and driven learner, Brian completed an associate degree in sociology from Diablo Valley College and transferred to the University of California, Berkeley, from where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in social welfare in 2016. Passionate about helping other Veterans, Brian will attend UC Berkeley for a master’s in social welfare, beginning in the fall of 2017. Currently, he works as a constituent services representative for Congressman Swalwell.

“Sentinels of Freedom has opened the door to opportunities for me and my family, opportunities that I did not have before… I feel that being a Sentinel has put me in the position to be a significant member of my community, and I hope to impact other lives the way the Sentinels of Freedom has impacted mine and my family’s.”