Petty Officer, Second Class Samuel-034, often simply called Sam by his friends, was a Spartan-II supersoldier of the UNSC Navy's Special Weapons Group. Samuel was notably the tallest and strongest of the Spartan-IIs, and often acted as the second-in-command of Blue Team in its formative years.
Early life and conscription
Samuel was born on July 10, 2511 on Harvest, a remote human Outer Colony in the Epsilon Indi system. In around 2517, Sam was identified as an extremely talented child destined for a great purpose and was listed as a candidate for Doctor Catherine Halsey's SPARTAN-II program as a result. Later that year, he was abducted by the UNSC Navy's Office of Naval Intelligence on September 23, 2517 at the age of six to be conscripted into the SPARTAN-II program, and was then replaced with a flash clone to hide his absence. Sam was sent to the Naval Officers Academy on Reach in the Epsilon Eridani system to begin training with the other Spartans under the watchful eyes of Halsey, Chief Petty Officer Franklin Mendez, and Déjà, the dumb AI serving as the Spartans' teacher. Samuel's flash clone would die later that year.
On the first day of training, Mendez divided the Spartan trainees into teams of three. Samuel was assigned into a team with fellow trainees John-117 and Kelly-087. During their first trip to "the playground", John finished first in the competition, while Kelly and Sam came in last. Mendez informed the team that they had lost, simply because, in his words, "Your team loses, you lose. You don't win until your team wins." As their team had finished last, they were not allowed to eat dinner that night. However, the three Spartans had learned a lesson in teamwork and the three never made the same mistake again. The day after, Sam had shoved John and threatened to push him off one of the pillars if he refused to work with them again. During the second run of the playground, the three worked together and achieved third place in the exercise, earning their dinner. The exercise led to the formation of a camaraderie between the three and they became good friends.
Training and augmentations
Along with John and Kelly, Samuel formed the Spartan-IIs' first iteration of Blue Team. Sam later trained with his fellow Spartans at the Military Wilderness Training Preserve on Reach. During one of the training operations on July 12, 2519, each Spartan trainee was dropped off at a different point in the preserve and was tasked with reaching an extraction point; the last Spartan to reach the point was to be left behind and forced to walk back.
After being dropped off, the Spartans regrouped and made their way to the extraction point together. Upon reaching the point, the Spartans encountered a squad of UNSC Marines. When Sam feigned an injury before the Marines, one of them moved to attack him. However, as part of their plan, the rest of the Spartans attacked the Marine by throwing rocks at him and knocked him unconscious. The Spartans then enacted a similar plan on the rest of the Marines and eventually defeated the entire squad. Afterwards, the Spartans reached a D96-TCE Albatross and, with Déjà's help, commandeered the dropship and left the training preserve. John was subsequently promoted to squad leader after the mission, while Sam often served as his second-in-command. By July 14, 2523, Sam and the Spartans had begun facing the formidable and ruthless Tango Company in simulated war games.
In March 2525, Sam and his fellow Spartans underwent augmentations at Medical Facility Endurance, and Sam was the fastest to recover and remained in exceptional health. He later attended a military funeral on the carrier UNSC Atlas in the Lambda Serpentis system for those Spartans who died during the augmentation process. Later, the Spartans then returned to Reach for their final training phase in the Highland Mountains.
Infiltration on Eridanus Secundus
On September 14, 2525, Samuel was selected to remain a member of Blue Team—now composed of John, Kelly, Linda-058, and Frederic-104. The team was then chosen for the Spartan-IIs' first mission, Operation: TALON at the Eridanus system. The operation's objective was to capture Colonel Robert Watts, a UNSC Marine turncoat officer and the leader of the United Rebel Front. ONI had recently discovered that Watts was residing within Eridanus Secundus, a large asteroid settlement and insurrectionist military base in the Eridanus system's largest asteroid belt.
Equipped with black body suits and MA2B assault rifles, Samuel and the rest of Blue Team were brought to the space docks of Eridanus II, where they infiltrated the Parabola-class freighter Laden, a freighter operated by the United Rebel Front. While aboard Laden, the Spartans discovered a crate of luxury goods and deduced that it was headed for Watts' location. The Spartans tagged the crate with a NAV marker transmitter, allowing them to follow the crate to Watts' location once they reached the asteroid. When Laden arrived at one of Eridanus Secundus' docking bays, Blue Team fought their way through Eridanus Secundus until they reached Watts' apartment, located using the NAV marker they had placed on the crate. After killing the turncoat colonel's guards, Sam and the rest of Blue Team secured Watts inside a crate and made their way back to Eridanus Secundus' docking bay.
Sam put several C-12 explosives on the asteroid's main hangar bay doors and the Spartans fled in a stolen D77-TC Pelican with Watts, as the doors blew open and the hangar bay decompressed. As the Pelican left the asteroid, Sam's explosives caused Eridanus Secundus to vent atmosphere and rotate erratically.
Chi Ceti IV and death
After the destruction of Harvest, Samuel and the rest of the Spartan-IIs were brought to the Reach FLEETCOM Military Complex, where Rear Admiral Michael Stanforth and the AI Beowulf briefed them on the emerging Covenant threat. The training of Sam, and the rest of the Spartan-IIs, was accelerated and the Spartans were sent to Chi Ceti IV in the Chi Ceti system to receive their new MJOLNIR Powered Assault Armor from Damascus Materials Testing Facility to aid in combat against the Covenant. Upon arriving at the Chi Ceti system aboard the Paris-class heavy frigate UNSC Commonwealth, the Spartans prepared to travel to the Damascus Testing Facility on Chi Ceti IV with Doctor Catherine Halsey to be equipped with their MJOLNIR armor. While in orbit over the planet, a Covenant ship—Unrelenting—appeared in the system and attacked Commonwealth. However, Commonwealth was able to temporarily ward off the ship, allowing the Spartans and Dr. Halsey to safely make their way to the facility. Upon arriving at Damascus, the Spartans were able to retrieve the MJOLNIR armor and then left to return to Commonwealth in a Pelican.
While en route to the frigate, Unrelenting returned to the battle and began to engage Commonwealth, severely damaging the frigate. As the Covenant prepared to finish off the human ship, John had Sam take a team of Spartans to remove the Pelican's Anvil-II AS missiles. With thruster packs, all the Spartans flew out from the Pelican and attempted to direct themselves towards Unrelenting. Sam, Kelly, and John were the only three Spartans who made it onto the ship, gaining access through a hull breach created by a Magnetic Accelerator Cannon round from Commonwealth.
As they entered and explored the Covenant vessel, Sam was struck in the side by an overcharged bolt from a Type-25 plasma pistol wielded by a Kig-Yar soldier while trying to protect John from harm. The shot burned a sizeable hole in Sam's unshielded armor and ruptured his vacuum suit. The Spartans managed to make it to the engine room of the ship and planted several Anvil-II warheads on the fusion generator; however, their only means of escape was through space, but this was impossible for Sam since the vacuum seal in his armor was compromised. Rather than allow his friend die in the vacuum of space, John ordered to Sam to remain behind and protect the warheads from the Covenant soldiers. Aware of his fate, Sam was quick to accept the orders despite the reluctance of Kelly. As his companions escaped, Sam ruthlessly held off the Kig-Yar soldiers trying to breach the engine room.
Sam's defense allowed the missiles to explode, destroying the entire ship and killing Sam. Sam was later listed as "missing in action" in accordance with ONI Directive 930, an Office of Naval Intelligence Section Two protocol that stated no Spartan-II could be listed as "killed in action"; it was believed that the morale of the public and servicemen alike would fall dramatically if they found out the legendary supersoldiers could actually be killed.
On December 1, 2525, a funeral for Sam was held aboard the Halcyon-class light cruiser UNSC Persian Gate in orbit around Chi Ceti IV. With the service led by Halsey, an empty casket for Sam was ejected into space in the Chi Ceti system. Sam's death led to the Spartans coming to the full realization that they could die in battle. Halsey asserted that the Spartans grieving for Sam is what made them human.
Samuel was the first Spartan-II to be killed in combat against the Covenant during the Human-Covenant War. To John, Sam's death proved to him that the Covenant was defeatable and that humanity had the power to win the war. John's views later became shared with not only the rest of Blue Team, but the entire SPARTAN-II program, who viewed Sam's death as a tragic sacrifice that proved the Covenant had weaknesses. Regardless, Sam's fate troubled John greatly and haunted him in his dreams, as John believed that if he had been better prepared and less reckless at Chi Ceti, Sam would have survived. In later EVA operations, John ensured his Spartans were carrying emergency patching kits, extra thruster packs, and locater beacons. John refused to send any Spartan on suicide missions, and he was terrified of losing any other Spartan. Some have speculated that the EOD-class Mjolnir—created as an effort to increase the likelihood of its user surviving an explosion—was developed in response to Sam's death at Chi Ceti. Sam's position on Blue Team was later filled by Kurt-051; although John initially had mixed feelings to this, as he believed Kurt to be highly skilled, but not as disciplined as Sam. Mortally wounded, Kurt had a hallucination about his Spartan comrades that had been killed in battle—including Sam—as he laid dying on November 3, 2552 during the Onyx Conflict.
Following the Covenant War, John, Fred, Kelly, and Linda returned to the glassed remains of Reach's Military Wilderness Training Preserve, where they recalled their friendships with Sam and discussed how Sam's sacrifice motivated them throughout the war.
Personality and traits
Samuel-034 was quiet and a careful listener, but extremely sociable when among his fellow Spartan-IIs and had a larger sense of humor than most of his peers. Like all Spartan-IIs, Sam was an extremely talented individual, even at a young age, and destined for greatness. Sam was known as the largest and the strongest Spartan-II, as well as an expert with explosives. According to John, Sam had the best sight and hearing capabilities of all of the Spartan-IIs. Samuel admittedly found it difficult to fall asleep prior to a mission's undertaking.
He cared little for those outside the SPARTAN-II program, and was known to display ruthlessness and pragmatism towards hostiles in combat situations, including human insurrectionists and later towards the Kig-Yar soldiers aboard Unrelenting. During Operation: TALON, Sam detonated a C-12 shaped charge on a docking bay at the United Rebel Front's Eridanus Secundus, irreverent to the obvious URF-affiliated civilian casualties that would be involved with the act. Sam did not display the same great leadership qualities as John-117 or Frederic-104 did, but he did act as John's second-in-command in Blue Team throughout the duration of his naval career.
By the first days of their training, despite their initially rough first interactions, Samuel formed a close friendship with John-117 and Kelly-087. Sam was the first Spartan to have spoken to and befriend John at Reach and, in 2552, John considered Sam to be his first and best friend. The three of them became inseparable, with John considering them to be members of his family. Sam was close to most of his fellow Spartan-II candidates during training and was deeply saddened by many of their deaths after the SPARTAN-II augmentation procedures killed nearly half of them. Sam and John were like brothers, they could always depend on each other. When Sam died, John and Kelly were the most devastated.
Samuel-034 was 223.4 centimeters (7 ft 4 in) in height with armor and 135 kilograms (298 lb) in mass without armor at the age of fourteen. Without his helmet, John-117 noted that Samuel was taller than him by a head. After recovering faster than any other Spartan from the augmentation procedures, he became the largest and strongest Spartan-II supersoldier.
Samuel had a darkly tanned skin complexion with sandy blond hair and green eyes. By 2525, Samuel had grown his hair out to three centimeters and was warned by Chief Petty Officer Franklin Mendez that he would look like a civilian if he continued to do so.
Following his augmentation procedures and the beginning of the Human-Covenant War, Samuel-034 was equipped with MJOLNIR Powered Assault Armor/Mark IV from Chi Ceti IV's Damascus Materials Testing Facility along with the rest of his fellow Spartans. Samuel donned a Materials Group developmental helmet permutation that shared visual cues with the armor variant that would eventually be known as the CQB-class Mjolnir variant. Samuel's weapons of choice appeared to be the BR85HB battle rifle, along with two M6G magnums.
Behind the scenes
Samuel-034 was voiced by Dane Jameson as a child, and by Halo: The Fall of Reach - The Animated Series. Samuel also served as the narrator for the second act of the series. In Halo Wars, Spartans will occasionally say "For Samuel!" after killing an enemy unit. "Sam" is one of the name options for customized Loadouts in Halo: Reach, along with the members of NOBLE Team and several other Spartan-IIs.as a teenager, in
Samuel's biography on Halo Waypoint originally listed his armored height as 238.8 cm (7 ft 10 in) and his unarmored mass as 155.6 kg (343 lb, though erroneously converted to 324 lb). This was consistent with his description as the largest of the Spartan-IIs and as being a head taller than John-117. However, his biography was later retconed to list his armored height and unarmored mass as 223.4 centimeters (7 ft 4 in) and 135 kg (298 lb), respectively. This makes him the same height as Jorge-052 and Douglas-042 (and ten kilograms less massive than Jorge) as well as only two centimeters taller than John when in armor.
There was a number tag conflict between Samuel-034 and Fhajad-084, as the latter was identified as "Fhajad-034" in Halo: The Fall of Reach. However, all subsequent media refers to Sam as "SPARTAN-034", while Fhajad is now identified with his current tag of "-084".
List of appearances