May 9, 2014
WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) today congratulated Xenia native Benjamin Tran and Dayton native Sean Young on being selected as finalists of the 2014 Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals (Sammies). The Ohio natives are competing in the National Security and International Affairs division for their work creating advanced improvised explosive device (IED) detecting sensors while working for the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
“Talented Ohioans like Mr. Tran and Mr. Young exemplify the ingenuity and drive that is fostered at Ohio’s military facilities,” Brown said. “Their dedicated work is vital to protecting our nation’s service members.”
The new IED detecting sensors that Tran and Young developed have saved the lives of many American soldiers. In the first 15 months after their system was implemented by an Army division in Afghanistan, not one soldier in the unit was killed by an IED. Unlike previous sensors, these sensors are fully operational in cloudy weather, making conditions safer for soldiers on the ground.
The Sammies are awarded to federal employees who have significantly impacted our country through their government service contributions. The awards highlight the important work that our federal government accomplishes.