This article is about the Spartan-II. For other people with this name, see William.
William-043 was a SPARTAN-II supersoldier. He was one of the few Spartans to survive the catastrophic Fall of Reach, but he was later killed on Onyx by a Mgalekgolo pair, after valiantly engaging them in hand-to-hand combat. Complying with Office of Naval Intelligence Directive 930, William-043 was listed as MIA, continuing the tradition that Spartans never die.
Childhood and SPARTAN-II program
William-043 was conscripted into the SPARTAN-II program in 2517, at age six, when Dr. Catherine Halsey singled him out as a physically and intellectually superior child. He was then replaced with a flash clone and taken to Reach, where he was trained by Déjà and CPO Mendez alongside the rest of the Spartan children. He was part of the missions to the Military Reservation 01478-B, Military Wilderness Training Preserve, and several missions in the Highland Mountains.
During the Covenant invasion of Reach, Will assigned as Red-Twelve, part of Fred's team sent to protect the orbital defense generators. As the group descended to the surface of Reach, their Pelican, Bravo 001, was shot down. The Spartans were forced to jump from the crashing Pelican. William suffered injuries upon landing, including a cracked tibia and some internal bleeding. Although these injuries severely hampered his fighting abilities, his Spartan endurance and biofoam allowed him to continue on.
Will was assigned to lead the splinter team designated Team Delta by Fred. His team consisted of five other Spartans as well as the remains of Charlie Company. They were to secure the fallback position for the Spartans; CASTLE Base. Though separated from the Charlie Company Marines and three of the Spartans, Will, Vinh-030, and Isaac-039 managed to make it to the entrance of the facility. They were unable to enter it until Fred and Kelly-087 met up with them and whispered Oly Oly Oxen Free into the speaker of the base entrance. It turned out that Dr. Halsey was in the facility, and she let them in.
Seeing that William's injuries were the least severe, Halsey sent him and Fred on a supply run in the base. They picked up a number of experimental pieces of equipment, including several armor modifications and new weapons. Dr. Halsey then activated Operation: WHITE GLOVE; the self-destruction of the base to prevent the data within from falling into Covenant hands, forcing the five Spartans and Halsey to retreat to the mining caves beneath the base. They were trapped in the caves for several days, during which William received an upgrade to the tracking system on his HUD, which improved his accuracy at nearly 1,000 meters.
A Covenant strike forced them deeper into the mountain until they discovered a Forerunner complex housing a crystalline artifact. It sent a spike of radiation that allowed the Covenant to triangulate their position. The Covenant breached the ceiling of the complex and a gravity lift soon appeared, sending Elites and Jackals pouring into the caves. The five Spartans and Dr. Halsey attempted to escape into another tunnel, but as they ran into a nearby cavern. Vinh and Isaac managed to drop satchel charges and collapse the entrance, which protected Will, Fred, Kelly, and Dr. Halsey for some time until they were rescued by Vice Admiral Danforth Whitcomb and the survivors from Installation 04. Will was then brought aboard a Spirit and taken to the captured Ascendant Justice, under control of Cortana.
Operation: FIRST STRIKE
Will was then designated as Blue-Five for the Spartans' extravehicular mission to repair the Ascendant Justice's damaged plasma conduit while the ship was in an anomalous Slipspace bubble caused by the Forerunner artifact. He managed to survive, braving incoming saboteur Elites as well as dangerous rogue plasma torpedoes.
Will was then a part of Operation: FIRST STRIKE. He went along with John, Fred, Linda, and Grace to the Unyielding Hierophant where he followed them into the core of the ship and helped detonate the fusion reactors. They then returned to Earth aboard the Gettysburg.
Battle of Earth
During the continuing Battle of Earth, Will aided Frederic-104 and Linda-058 in defending Earth for two weeks after the UNSC In Amber Clad disappeared. Will and Blue Team stopped a Covenant invasion of Mount Erebus in Antarctica through use of a HAVOK nuclear warhead. They also destroyed Covenant forces on the sea floor near the Yucatan Peninsula. Lastly, Blue Team were deployed to Havana, Cuba, to battle Covenant forces who had taken control of the Centennial Orbital Elevator and were attempting to use it to bring captured FENRIS nuclear warheads to orbiting ships. Blue Team destroyed the Covenant forces and captured the warheads.
Soon, Lord Hood sent a transmission to Frederic-104 informing them that Doctor Halsey requested Spartan reinforcements on Onyx. William, Fred, and Linda traveled to Onyx by capturing the Covenant destroyer Bloodied Spirit and using it to travel there, destroying the Covenant vessel's sister ship before leaving.
Onyx and death
After landing on Onyx, William and the other Spartans soon encountered Kurt-051, Halsey, Kelly-087, Mendez, and the SPARTAN-IIIs. After Blue Team was informed of the situation on Onyx, the ONI AI Endless Summer informed the group of his discovery of a Forerunner facility at one of the planet's poles that was producing Onyx Sentinels and that the ground needed to destroy the factory.
The group disabled the factory and pressed on towards the core of the planet, where they discovered a slipspace portal at the apex of a tiered structure. Will and the surviving Spartans took positions around the portal, preparing to defend it from the pursuing Covenant. The Covenant soon arrived and the two groups engaged in a large battle. Will's final act was to leap forward and engage two Hunters without a weapon, to distract them so Kelly could recover from a concussive blast, which had also killed Holly-G003. He killed a Hunter by ripping the Lekgolo worms that composed it out of its armor. Stunned by the sight of the Spartan taking on a Hunter in hand-to-hand combat, none of the other Covenant attacked him.
The creature's bond brother shot him with its assault cannon. Will took a single step towards the Hunter after the blast melted the front of his MJOLNIR armor, and then collapsed and died. After successfully escaping into the Shield World, the surviving Spartans held a funeral and memorial service for their fallen companions.
Personality and description
Will was resolved to be a very reserved, but extremely determined individual. John-117 once noted that "He never failed to complete his missions." When he was younger, he always had jokes and riddles that kept the spirits of the Spartans high. Over the years, his lifetime of combat hardened him, as it had all of the Spartans. John-117 thought that something special in Will had been lost. Because the SPARTAN-IIs' numbers had been thinned by the war, it seems that he developed a close working relationship with Frederic-104. He preferred his shortened name, "Will" over "William", which he thought of as too formal.
He seems to have a talent for using the Rocket Launcher. He could shoot down a moving Banshee at long range. He also shows exceptional hand-to-hand combat skills. Before his death, he was able to fight and slay a Hunter in unarmed combat. This was a valiant action that cost him his life, as he was struck at point-blank range by the other Hunter's assault cannon.
List of appearances