Marine veteran Jon Barton knows a thing or two about being combat-ready.
The military consultant for television and film served nearly 12 years in the military, including time stationed at Camp Pendleton in San Diego County.
“My specialty was asymmetric warfare and counter-guerilla tactics,” said Barton, who now runs Night Fire Media.
The consulting company for TV shows and movies makes sure what you see on your screen is military accurate.
“Any military or action movie that you have seen, I have had a hand in it one way or the other,” he said.
In addition to technical training and expertise, he owns hundreds of authentic military uniforms, equipment and tactical gear, most of which sits in storage between productions.
But when Barton saw the images of Putin’s war machine attacking Ukrainian civilians, he knew he had to do something.
“It all clicked: uniform, boots, other tactical gear… I wanted to make sure that I got the most important critical gear out there first. So I just had to look through everything and grab what I thought was ‘mission essential.'”
He’s delivering an estimated 1,000 uniforms and additional battlefield equipment to St. Andrews Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Echo Park before it’s flown to the Poland/Ukraine border. With every able-bodied Ukrainian man called to fight off the invasion, Barton hopes the combat-ready equipment will help with the defense effort.
As long as the war keeps raging, Barton says he is ready and willing to do whatever it takes to help the Ukrainian people stand up to Russia and Putin.
“Ukraine is a beautiful amazing sovereign nation and deserves their independence,” Barton says. “I think, inherently, the U.S. Marine in me can’t abide a bully.”
If you are interested in helping the people of Ukraine, Stand With Ukraine Los Angeles has compiled a list of resources and information to get you started.