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Commander of the 21st Space Assault Battalion
Colonel Marmon Crowther was the commander of the elite 21st Space Assault Battalion, nicknamed the Black Daggers.
Operation: SILENT STORM
- Main article: Operation: SILENT STORM
Colonel Marmon Crowther was in command of the UNSC's 21st Space Assault Battalion, the "Black Daggers", consisting of Orbital Drop Shock Troopers (ODST). According to Vice Admiral Preston Cole, they were the best the UNSC had aside from the untested SPARTAN-II supersoldiers. Crowther was skeptical about deploying the SPARTAN-IIs at their front lines due to their inexperience in the battlefield as well as their young age, much to John-117's frustration.
During the surprise attack on the ODST deployment on Biko's moon Seoba, the commanding officer of the 21st's Alpha Company was killed, resulting in Crowther promoting Lieutenant Hamm to the rank of captain and CO of Alpha Company. Hamm would constantly butt heads with the leader of the SPARTAN-IIs, John-117. Having realized that Lieutenant Commander Hector Nyeto was likely an Insurrectionist, Crowther began quietly working with the Spartans on missions against the Covenant while publicly continuing to butt heads with them, claiming at one point that he was going to send them back to Reach while having Sergeant Avery Johnson pass them secret orders. Crowther was later responsible for John's promotion to the rank of Master Chief Petty Officer.
Betrayal and Death
During the attack on the Covenant supply world of Zhoist, Crowther gave contradicting orders to Sierra Force, the Prowlers that fell under John's command to disrupt Hector Nyeto's planned betrayal. Crowther then waited on the flight deck of the UNSC Ghost Song with Sergeant Avery Johnson for backup to make his move and relieve Nyeto of command when Nyeto attempted to betray them to the Covenant. When Nyeto began his betrayal, Crowther revealed that Nyeto's Insurrectionist loyalties were already known and attempted to relieve him of command and place Nyeto under arrest for treason. However, the entire Prowler's crew turned out to be Insurrectionists and turned on Crowther and Johnson. When Johnson handed Crowther a hidden pistol, the Ghost Song's sensor operator drew an M6E magnum and shot Crowther in the chest and head, killing him instantly. Johnson returned fire, killing the sensor operator and escaping, but Nyeto blew all of the ODSTs into space. Nonetheless, Johnson and Crowther succeeded in foiling Nyeto's plan through a combination of Nyeto's orders and Johnson using his emergency distress beacon to draw the Covenant's attention to Nyeto, forcing him to flee.
Crowther would ultimately leave a lasting impact John-117 despite their differences. After the successful operation, John chose not to go AWOL and chase Nyeto as he knew that it was not something that Crowther would've wanted. Instead, John intended to honor his legacy by carrying on with the fight. Crowther's example also taught John the important but subtle difference between a leader and a commander. Additionally, Crowther's decision to promote John to Master Chief would become a promotion that would ultimately define the Spartan's career.
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Personality and traits
John-117 initially suspected Crowther of wanting to save his own reputation when he was reluctant to use the Spartan-IIs in operations after he found out they were minors and blamed the Colonel for not giving the Spartans more commanding roles within the battalion. Crowther later changed his mind after the Battle of Seoba and privately recognized that they were magnificent soldiers, but kept up appearances after he realized that there were Insurrectionists on board. After Crowther confided to John-117 that he was weary of Hector Nyeto - whom he suspected of having Insurrectionist sympathies and wanting to kill the Spartan-IIs - however, he became more accepting and respectful of the Spartans in general, and John in particular; the latter especially saw him as a father figure and a role model for commanding. When John attempted to apologize for his previous behavior, Crowther's response was to never apologize for making himself clear and that Crowther himself never did.
List of appearances
- Halo: Silent Storm (First appearance)
- ^ Halo: Silent Storm, pages 304-305
- ^ Halo: Silent Storm, chapters 24-25
- ^ Halo: Silent Storm, pages 381-382
- ^ Halo: Silent Storm, page 226
- ^ Halo: Silent Storm