Governor Stitt to Present State Level Awards for Heroism to Police Officers, National Guard Soldier
Oklahoma City, OK (STL.News) Governor Kevin Stitt announced today that he will present three police officers with the Oklahoma Purple Heart and the Oklahoma Medal of Valor to an Oklahoma Army National Guardsman in a ceremony scheduled for 2 p.m. Tuesday, May 18, in the Blue Room at the Oklahoma State Capitol. These will be the first state level awards for heroism given through the Oklahoma State Awards Program.
The three police officers to be honored are Oklahoma City Police Officer Zachary Barby, Tulsa Police Officer Aurash Zarkeshan and Tulsa Police Sergeant Craig Johnson. All three officers earned the Oklahoma Purple Heart for their bravery and personal sacrifice in the line of duty. Johnson’s award will be presented posthumously to his family.
The Oklahoma Purple Heart award is given annually by the Governor on behalf of the State of Oklahoma. The award is presented exclusively to first responders, living or deceased, who are seriously injured in the course of their assigned duties.
Officer Zachary Barby is receiving the award for his actions on the morning of Nov. 11, 2020, when several Oklahoma City Police officers attempted to apprehend an individual suspected of two murders and a kidnapping.