How An American Soldier Is Made: The Story of Ian Fisher

Photo: Craig F. Walker / The Denver Post

What does it take to create an American Soldier? Denver Post Photojournalist Craig F. Walker tracked Ian Fisher from his high school graduation through basic training, assignment to Colorado's Fort Carson, and deployment in Iraq:

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 Lakewood s Bear Creek High School and, two weeks later, shipped out to basic training. There, he began the challenging process of becoming an American soldier - and outgrowing the trappings of youth. 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.

Photo Gallery at Denver Post's Captured Photo Collection Blog | The Story | Flash Page

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I for one am glad to see that this a depiction of a Human like all those others that get in the service and that do their tour and their work on the other side of the world.

Walker chose to depict not a stereotypical story of a nextdoor-neighbour-boy that gets into the military, is made a Fighting Machine and turns home a Hero.
Instead he just shows a guy that during the whole story stays just that- A dude that just struggles in his own way to cope with what is thrown at him in life. No heroism- just plain and simple that what happens. And he survives all of that and ends up married and has to go on with his life like basically he alsways did. 'Lots' of girlfriends...? Drugs...? AWOL...? QRF-duty and the stress and frustration of being in the army and out in Iraq...? All wel- He still returns home like the kid that went away. Grown and jaded, but still that kid.

If that thing is depressing in some way, ... well..., for most folks that just about sums up how things go- That's life.
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