A British soldier killed in a suicide blast while on patrol in Afghanistan has been named as Warrant Officer Class 2 Ian Michael Fisher from the 3rd Battalion, The Mercian Regiment (Staffords).
The 42-year-old studied at Staffordshire University before joining the Territorial Army in Stoke-on-Trent and later the Mercian Regiment. He was killed yesterday in Helmand province on the final day of an operation to disrupt insurgent activity.
WO2 Ian Fisher leaves his wife, Emma, two sons, James, seven, and William, five, and his parents, Simon and Helen.
Paying tribute, Emma said: "Ian will always be the centre of my life, he will be remembered as a doting father, loving husband and a true professional soldier.
"He loved being a soldier, that's what he lived for. We are all so proud and always will be."
The MoD said WO2 Fisher's colleagues described him as "the epitome of an Infantry Sergeant Major, straight talking and obsessive in his pursuit of excellence and gaining the most from his subordinates while ensuring their wellbeing."
The 42-year-old physics and geology graduate, WO2 Ian Fisher was born in Barking in Essex, joined the Territorial Army in February 1993.
After completing his degree at Staffordshire University, and following three and a half years' service as a reservist Lance Corporal, he volunteered to go to Hong Kong in August 1996 as a Regular Private with B Company, 1st Battalion The Staffordshire Regiment (Prince of Wales's).
He completed four previous operational tours from 1999 - once to Northern Ireland, twice to Iraq and a previous tour of Afghanistan in 2011.