Soldier Honored: Aaron C. Torian
Branch of Service: Marine Corps
Rank: Master Sergeant
Master Sergeant Aaron C. Torian, 36, of Paducah, Ky., was assigned to the 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion, Marine Special Operations Regiment, U.S. Marine Corps Special Operations Command at Fort Lejeune, N.C., and served during Operation Enduring Freedom. On February 15, 2014, MSgt. Torian was killed when an improvised explosive devise detonated in Helmand province, Afghanistan.
A 1995 graduate of Thomas Stone High School, MSgt. Torian earned his bachelor’s degree in Health and Human Performance in 2001, obtained a master’s degree in Instructional Leadership in 2003, and enlisted in the Marines shortly thereafter. In 2005, he was named 2nd Marine Division’s Noncommissioned Officer of the Year. MSgt. Torian deployed in support of both Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. He was promoted to Gunnery Sergeant (Combat Meritoriously) on December 2, 2009. MSgt. Torian’s awards include the Purple Heart, a Navy Commendation Medal with Combat Distinguishing Device, a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, a Combat Action Ribbon with gold star, a Sea Service Deployment Ribbon with three stars, a Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, a Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, an Iraq Campaign Medal, an Afghanistan Campaign and the Good Conduct Medal.
“He felt strongly about what we, the USA, were doing and we backed him 100 percent,” his mother Esta Smith said, adding that her son is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
All three of the Torian children are Folds of Honor Scholarship recipients.