Star Wars Lore – Alpha-17 (Legends)
Named by Jedi Padawan Anakin Skywalker, Alpha-17 was a courageous and determined clone. While his career began and culminated on Kamino, his journey in-between was nothing short of incredible…
Preserving the Clone Army
Only two months following the Battle of Geonosis, the Clone Wars arrived on Tipoca City. The Separatists charged into the heart of Kamino’s capital, knowing its significance to the Galactic Republic’s war effort, forcing the hand of Lama Su. The Kaminoan Prime Minister activated the ARC troopers, deploying them to hot-spots across Kamino in a last-ditch effort to save the planet’s cloning facilities. Among those deployed was Alpha-17, who teamed up with Jedi Master Shaak Ti, Jedi Knight Obi-Wan Kenobi and his Padawan, Anakin Skywalker, to repel the droid forces from Tipoca’s central armoury. To the Jedi’s dismay, they quickly realised Alpha was like no other trooper, as he rigged the cloning labs to explode. His reasoning for such as drastic sacrifice of clone lives was simple: “They grow up loyal to the Republic, or they don’t grow up at all.” However, the Jedi found another way to push back the Separatist forces. Together they coordinated a counterattack using Kamino’s waters to flood the enemy. Partly due to his efforts, Alpha-17 preserved the next generation of clone soldiers.
A True Hero
Having witnessed the clone’s lethal effectiveness on Kamino, Obi-Wan Kenobi enlisted the help of Alpha-17 in many subsequent missions. The first of which occurred on the Gungan colony moon of Ohma-D’un that had been ravaged by genocidal slaughter. While investigating, Alpha and his comrades were attacked by bounty hunter Durge and Dark Jedi Asajj Ventress. However, alongside Skywalker, Alpha-17 managed to destroy the pair’s bio-weapon before it could ravage Naboo. In another mission, the ARC trooper accompanied Kenobi and his Padawan to the remote Outer Rim world of Jabiim, which had recently declared its allegiance to Count Dooku’s Confederacy of Independent Systems. Initially, the Republic recorded a string of victories over the Separatist forces stationed there. But that all changed as damp weather conditions continued to halt the Republic’s march forward. In-fact, the lack of movement resulted in an ambush, leading to a massive explosion that seemingly claimed the lives of Kenobi and Alpha-17. While both men survived, they were transferred under Separatist custody to a secret prison on Rattatak, where they faced torture at the hands of Ventress. Despite the intolerable nature of each beating, though, Alpha and Kenobi failed to reveal sensitive information regarding Republic troop movement. What’s more, they managed to escape imprisonment, fight their way off Rattatak, and regroup with the Grand Army.
Leading the Way
After several weeks spent recovering in a bacta tank, Alpha-17 was transferred from General Kenobi’s Third Systems Army back to Kamino, where he could train the next generation of clone troopers. Within a matter of months, Alpha was promoted to the rank of captain. And as the lead instructor of Tipoca City’s training facility, he oversaw the experimental ARC training program, which birthed legendary clone captains and commanders such as Neyo, Bacara, Gree, Appo, Rex, Bly, Wolffe and Fordo. Furthermore, he handpicked some of the finest clones to graduate from the program to serve in Squad Seven. Despite his new role, however, Alpha-17 still played a part on the battlefield from time to time. For example, he was chosen to accompany Senator Bail Organa on his tour of the Outer Rim Sieges. Unfortunately, General Grievous attacked and critically wounded Alpha, so much so that he thought he’d never walk again. He was later loaded onto a medical transport alongside the seemingly deceased Ventress, as hostilities wound down. But the transport would never reach its destination of Coruscant. As it turned out, the Dark Jedi was still very much alive, and at her behest, the pilots diverted course into the unknown…
Now it’s time for this week’s question: where do you think Asajj Ventress and Alpha-17 ventured to aboard the medical transport? Let me know in the comments below.