Craig F. Walker
The Denver Post
"IAN FISHER: AMERICAN SOLDIER"
His decision to join the Army grew out of many things. The opportunity to fight for his country. The desire to add to a family legacy. The need to point his young life in a productive direction. In the spring of 2007 and at the depths of the Iraq war's unpopularity, Ian Fisher graduated from Bear Creek High School in Lakewood, CO and, two weeks later, shipped out to Fort Benning, GA for basic training. Like the 1240 Coloradoans that joined the United States Army in 2007, he began the challenging process of becoming an American soldier. Like many recruits, he would struggle, learn, make mistakes and rebound. His training prepared him for violent conflict in a foreign land. Nothing prepared him for the war within.
Ian Fisher cradles his injured elbow during his processing into the United States Army, June 20, 2007. Though he later had a change of heart after speaking with a commander, he saw a possibility to escape his enlistment only two days in. From his first day in fatigues through his days driving a Humvee in Iraq, military life often didn't mesh with his expectations. Sometimes the structure of the Army and the demands of training for war clashed with the freedom he shared with his outside friends, but over two years, he overcame injuries and obstacles from both the Army and himself.