DW-418121 (Animal)---born Craig Anthony Stewart---was born on Corellia in 35 BBY. Animal uses the T-21B Heavy Blaster as a Heavy Weapons Stormtrooper within the Stormtrooper Corps. A Master Sergeant within the Corps, the Corellian is a proficient, quiet Non-Commissioned Officer who is one of the very best Heavy Weapons Stormtroopers within the Corps.
He grew up poor & under-educated. His parents, both working-class parents with little education themselves beyond the basics, wanted something better for their son. When the Galactic Empire came to power, Animal's parents enrolled him into the Sub-Adult Group at age of 14. While a later aged teenager into the group, Animal progressed quickly in 4 years, gaining leadership roles before he turned 17 years of age.
At age 17 in 16 BBY, he graduated both formal required education on Corellia and the Sub-Adult Group. He was immediately shipped off to the Imperial Academy of Carida, the premier training location for Imperial Stormtroopers. By 14 BBY, he was graduated and attached to Death's Whisper Legion.
Family & Orphanage
Sadly, a tragic airspeeder accident claimed both his parents' lives a few weeks after Animal's enrollment into the local Sub-Adult Group. Lonely, depressed, & isolated, Animal "lost himself" with everyday routine of the Sub-Adult Group. He hated the orphanage where he was forced into at age 14 after his parents' death; bullied & picked-on, Animal used the Sub-Adult Group as an escape from the bleak reality of the orphanage.
However, it as the constant bullying (that often turned into physical conflict), combined with discipline from the Sub-Adult Group, that started to mold & build Animal. He learned to stand-up for himself, defend others, and most importantly, he learned how to fight. He learned to fight so well, and fought so much, that the bullies nicknamed him "Animal" because of his intense nature when fighting---once he started throwing the punches, he wouldn't stop until total victory. And even in the fights he was soundly beaten, he would keep getting up time and time again until he was ever knocked out cold or had somehow won.
Academy of Carida
At age 17 in 16 BBY, he graduated both formal required education on Corellia and the Sub-Adult Group. He was immediately shipped off to the Imperial Academy of Carida, the premier training location for Imperial Stormtroopers.
His 2 years at Carida was marked by perfect attendance, near-perfect physical tests, and he constantly scored in the low 90s on all tests, both written & practical field tests. His nickname Animal carried over to his Stormtrooper training; he was known as aggressive & short-tempered when angered, but he was also known as fair, a team player, and a leader. These qualities quickly moved him up the Academy's training squads' chain of command.
Animal experienced death early in his life as a cadet in the Empire; one of his closet friends in training with him, Motley, that he knew from the Sub-Adult Group back on Corellia was killed during a training exercise when an AT-AT stepped on him & crushed him to death. Animal took the death personally, as he was in the training squad with his friend (his friend was the lead cadet officer for the squad), and Animal felt he could had done something more to help his friend and avoid his death. Post-investigations found that Animal's friend was lagging behind the infantry formation and was shown to be lacking in physical endurance due to a untreated medical condition that he kept hidden from the recruiters & somehow hid from the entrance medical examination into Carida.
After his friend's funeral, Animal took over command of the training squad. He keeps his friend's dog tags to this day as a reminder. By 14 BBY, he was graduated and attached to Death's Whisper Legion (Dark Battalion; Joker Platoon).
Early Years: Death Whisper's Legion
His initial first few years in the Empire's dreaded Stormtrooper Corps was rather boring; the storied career of the Death's Whisper Legion during the Western Reaches Pacification Operations from 18 BBY to 15 BBY was a far cry to the present day routine patrols & security details aboard the Darkest Night and the every-once-in-a-while planetary patrol or ship boarding action against smugglers or pirates.
Being part of Dark Battalion, Animal was within the company of a truly great unit, although that greatness wouldn't come until Operation Foothold (9 BBY to 8 BBY) & Operation Immediate Rescue (8 BBY to 7.10 BBY).
Going above & beyond the call of duty, rarely seen Novatroopers oversaw a special ceremony as Darth Vader presented Animal with the Medal of Valor for his personal actions during Operation Foothold. Animal was also double promoted, from Sergeant to Sergeant First Class (skipping past Staff Sergeant).
After the ceremony, Animal & Dark Battalion were turned into a Special Forces fighting unit under orders from Darth Vader personally to Imperial Outer Rim High Command. Animal & his comrades endured almost 2 years worth of intense training & field testing to turn the Battalion into a truly terrifying force against the enemies of the Empire.
Star Destroyer Refit: Back to the Academy
During the Darkest Night's Later Design & Refit (5 BBY to 4 BBY), Animal and the rest of the Darkest Night & Death's Whisper Legion were put on extended R&R. Throughout this R&R, Animal was ordered back to the Academy---as were most others---to freshen up on Academy training. For his part, Animal was sent back to Academy of Carida.
Operation Home Base (4 BBY to 3 BBY)
"Hell. That's what our deployment was like with Azure Hammer Command. But we all have to Pay the Piper sooner or later. I still can't get the nightmares to stop to this day. I can still see it, feel it, even smell it still. All the death. All the destruction. In the middle of a routine day, its like I was there now. The nightmares of our actions then at night are a blessing---at least then I know its just a nightmare." - Imperial Stormtrooper DW-418121 (Animal) of Dark Battalion
Returning to active duty in 4 BBY, the Darkest Night & Death's Whisper Legion was transferred to the 1st Sector Army (Azure Hammer Command) for a brief time (4 BBY to 3 BBY) to personally transport several Imperial VIPs on a classified mission from Coruscant to the Inner Rim, then to the Expansion Region and back to Coruscant over the course of a year (the mission included several away missions of classified nature).
The classified deployments left a undeniable troubled mark on Joker Platoon and several other Naval personnel from the Darkest Night who assisted in the classified away missions. After the Operation, Animal was promoted to Master Sergeant.
Operation Clean House (3 BBY to Present)
Operation Clean House is a military campaign where the Darkest Night is the Command Ship of a special naval Battle Group, the 115th Naval Battle Group.
Since the end of the Western Reaches Pacification Operations, routine Imperial patrols in the area have not been sufficient as the Rebel Alliance's firepower & threat grew. Gaining a foothold, new allies, & making allegiances with old friends, the Rebel Alliance have been conducting bold operations in the Javin Oversector over recent months. Fearing what happened to the 11th Sector Army between 9 BBY & 8 BBY in Operation Foothold, newly appointed Moff Starski ordered the creation of the 115th Naval Battle Group to put an end to the Rebels' activities.
The largest battle of note, so far, has been the Battle of Lepsawn 1-9.