Eric von Fischer is a career officer, a West Point Graduate, specializing in military intelligence. No, he isn't the sort who would sneak behind enemy lines, knife between his teeth, to steal important documents from under the noses of our country's enemies. Before things went to hell he spent most of his time in a trailor (or office) working with satellite intelligence, looking at maps, and analyzing field data that other people brought in.
He can easily be compared to Gene Hackman's character in BAT-21 - "ok, we've looked at the maps, analyzed the reports of the units in the field, looked at the spysat and aerial reconnaissance photos and collated 150 intercepted radio transmissions - from all that we think that the HQ is located at grid 29 coordinates 85b by 62a - probably a battalion HQ - send in a strike team, I'm off for a golf date."
Needless to say since things fell apart he has had to "readjust" his operational framework, and now relies far more on HumInt than he used to. He also finds himself out in the field a lot more than he was prepared for when he signed up. Initially this caused some readjustment problems (he was originally a bit of a prima donna with maps and satellite photos, and didn't mind if people knew it), and his performance started to slip a bit.
Things went downhill even further when his family (wife, son, two daughters) were killed in an auto accident. Eric never fully recovered.
When a FO team was sent out and got chewed up badly because of some faulty intelligence (Eric was demoted from LT COL, and he damned near got court martialed for it) during operations in Saudi Arabia it shocked him out of the numbness that had fallen over him since things started falling apart in the States, and he determined that things could go one of two ways - either he could blow his head off and put himself out of everyone's misery, or he could throw himself back into his work, learn the skills that he needed to learn in order to do his job under changed circumstances, and make some sort of difference.
Obviously since he's still around, he chose the latter course. Since 2002 when the Keystone Division returned from Saudi Arabia he has tried to become a model officer - almost too perfect. He has taken every opportunity available to him to learn fieldcraft, and has worked his ass off to adapt the Intelligence assets of the Division (or at least those subject to his control or influence) to changing circumstances and reduced resources. While he still isn't Rambo, he can now at least operate in dangerous areas without (metaphorically) having the words "Shoot Here" painted on his forehead in glowing letters. Overall he still prefers to leave the actual fighting to people who are trained for it - when he does go into the field its to gain intelligence, not to blow shit up.
As for background - grew up in California, attended West Point, went into Military Intelligence and worked at various posts, including the Pentagon. That was where he first served as a new-puke LT during Operation Desert Storm. Assigned to the Keystone Division when it was sent to Saudi Arabia. Attained the rank of Lt. Col. Commanded the 628th Mil Int Bn. Relieved of command upon return to the USA, he was demoted, and was awaiting a court martial. Times being what they were, the demotion held, but the court martial was expunged. With the numerous losses in Saudi Arabia, von Fischer was needed. He was reinstated as CO of the 628th, until things got even worse, and he and a few of his staff were evacuated north of Harrisburg. The 628th was stricken from the books, and all of it's personnel absorbed into the 3/103rd Armored.
He would likely be looking forward to retirement now if things were a bit better. Prior to the Saudi Arabia mission he let himself get a bit out of shape, but he has been pushing himself ruthlessly for the last two years and has managed to lose a lot of the desk jockey look that he previously had.
He's a voracious reader, and his hobbies include Civil War history and recreationism (he has a Union regular infantry Colonel's uniform, saber, and pistol that he takes exquisite care of, as well as numerous Civil War wargames, books, and paraphenalia). He also enjoys ballroom dancing, and nature photography. He also "collects" stray cats and dogs, and is constantly farming them out to other members of the division. The good major has a total of 17 cats and 12 dogs. Most of these are farmed out as above. Currently, in his quarters, he keeps 3 cats and 2 dogs. This is the "safe" number that won't cause TOO MUCH of a stir.
In terms of personality he is fairly distant. He is always disgustingly professional in every sense (protocol, uniform care, appearance, interaction with others, parade-ground salutes, etc.) but there are few people who can really call him "friend".
The only exception to this is those who share his interests in a) animals (like most animal owners, he can talk for hours about the cute things that his pets have done recently, and has perfected the cutesy voice one uses when talking about pets - most people who have interacted with him professionally are stunned when hearing him talk this way), b) Civil War history (which is another topic which he will discuss endlessly if given half a chance).
He has none of the soldier's vices - he doesn't drink (other than the occasional beer to be sociable), doesn't smoke, doesn't use drugs, and seems to be absolutely devoid of a love life. He is known to be personally brave, and willing to share the hardships and dangers that those under his command suffer - so long as his presence doesn't endager them further.
Some of his staff and co-workers respect him, but whatever quality it is that makes men love and revere their superior officers, he doesn't have it (though he's still looking). In truth it is less a case of him being outrageously brave and more a determination not to shame himself or fail those under his command that keeps him going. He also seeks to atone for the loss of the FO team in Saudi Arabia.
MAJOR ERIC von FISCHER, AGE 38
West Point Class of 1987
Military Intelligence Analyst
Former Cdr, 628th Mil Intel Btn, 28th Div.
MIA after the final attack on Lewisburg Armory Camp...