Illinois State alumnus Aaron Fisher ’01, a captain in the Marine Corps, has been awarded a Bronze Star for his work during a recent deployment in support of the war in Afghanistan.

Fisher, from Bloomington, served as the company commander of Engineer Support Company, 9th ESB, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force during the seven-month deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Fisher, a Criminal Justice Sciences graduate in the College of Applied Science and Technology, was awarded the medal last month at a base in Japan.

Fisher, 34, organized his company to accomplish all assigned missions, and his company played a key role in the completion of more than 45 different engineering projects, including more than 60 kilometers of new route construction, survivability improvements, patrol base development and enhancement, combat patrol security and general engineering efforts at outposts across Helmand province.

“It’s a big testament to all the work the Marines did through his leadership and guidance,” Chief Warrant Officer Joshua R. Ashworth, the motor transport maintenance officer for the battalion, said in a statement released by the Marines. “I would definitely deploy with him again.”

Fisher led several important projects, but commanded two critical and especially challenging missions. His company constructed a land bridge, known as Route Red Wadi Crossing, to ensure the main supply route remained open following the winter thaw. Additionally, his company built Route Tiffany providing a resupply access route to a remote forward operating base.

“Route Red was highly used by the locals after its construction for local commerce,” said Fisher. “It helped improve the quality of life by making it easier for them to get from one place to another.

“The Marines pulled together and they did an amazing job,” said Fisher. “It’s not something I did. It is something the company did.”

Fisher is a graduate of Bloomington High School. He and his wife, Erin, have five children.

“I owe this award to my Marines,” said Fisher. “I received this award as a result of their efforts throughout our deployment. I wear this award for them.”

Ryan Denham can be reached at