Real Name: Prviate Donald Sample

Identity/Class: Human (World War II era)

Occupation: Soldier, former military artist and draftsman

Group Membership: Deadly Dozen

Affiliations: Sister Angelique, Howling Commandos (Isadore "Izzy" Cohen, Nick Fury, Gabe Jones, Eric Koenig, Robert "Reb" Ralston), Sam Sawyer

Enemies: Captain Conner, Nazis, Dr. Lola Steimle, Dr. Steinem, Dr. Sweikert

Known Relatives: Unnamed wife

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Able Company base, England
formerly, Boston, Massachusetts

First Appearance: Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos#98 (May, 1972)

Powers/Abilities: Donald Sample was a capable draftsman, and could design blueprints. In combat he wielded a machine gun and grenades.

History: (Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos#98 (fb) - BTS) - Donald Sample was a lieutenant in the military, serving as a professional draftsman, but he was busted to private and imprisoned when he stole government papers and released them to the newspapers to publish. Sample was unrepentant for his actions, and intended to resume his personal cause upon his release. Captain Sam Sawyer decided to recruit him for the Deadly Dozen squadron.

(Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos#98) - Sample was introduced to Timothy "Dum-Dum" Dugan, who was to be the leader of the Deadly Dozen. Sample was put through training by Dugan, and joined the Deadly Dozen on their first mission: to capture a band of German spies who had landed on English soil. The Deadly Dozen succeeded in their mission.

(Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#1 (fb)) - Sample was introduced to Combat Kelly, newly assigned as Dugan's replacement as leader of the Deadly Dozen. He joined the Deadly Dozen on a mission to Germany to destroy a new German jet plane created by Dr. Steinem. The Deadly Dozen successfully raided the Luftwaffe complex where the jet was stored.

(Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#1) - Kelly had Sample and the others destroy the jet plane using grenades. The destruction of the jet threatened to set off all of the jet fuel in the complex, and the Dozen escaped before the explosion destroyed the entire complex. They then met up with their rendezvous plane, and returned to England.

(Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#3 - BTS) - In January, 1945, the Deadly Dozen entered the frontlines of the war during the push into Germany following the Battle of the Bulge. During a lull in the action, Kelly narrated to them the story of how he became a convict. Not long after he finished his tale, the fighting resumed.

(Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos#104) - The Deadly Dozen were commanded by Captain Conner, and the squad began to realize that Conner was unrealistic about the battlefield conditions. Sgt. Fury's Howling Commandos came to assist the Deadly Dozen, reuniting Sample with Dum-Dum Dugan, but Captain Conner cracked-up when he learned that thousands of German soldiers were headed for their position.

(Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#4) - Sgt. Fury beat up Conner in anger, then assumed command the situation, ordering Miller and Wagner to bring Conner back to headquarters. Fury led his and Kelly's squads into battle against the Germans, and they succeeded against enormous odds, driving off the Germans. When Conner returned, he tried to kill Fury and Kelly for commiting mutiny, but Miller caught up to Conner and killed him for abandoning him and Wagner after an attack. The Deadly Dozen brought Miller and Wagner's bodies back with them, but left Conner's.

(Combat Kelly and his Deadly Dozen#6 (fb)) - Sample joined the Deadly Dozen at a USO dance, but their pass was brought to an end when Captain Sawyer summoned them for another mission. The Deadly Dozen were assigned to work with pilot "Mad-Dog" Martin in order to break through a Nazi fortress. As they observed the fortress in Martin's B-17, Sample took blueprints of the fortress, using his eye as a draftsman to find a weak spot in the design. After Martin dropped them off to join the troops on the surface, Sample had to admit that he couldn't find a flaw in the fortress.

(Combat Kelly and his Deadly Dozen#6) - Martin returned and crashed his plane into the fortress, allowing the Deadly Dozen a chance to take the fortress. He won the respect of the Deadly Dozen with his actions.

(Combat Kelly and his Deadly Dozen#7) - As the fortress was mopped up by the Allies, the Deadly Dozen had to walk to their rendezvous point. They found a farmhouse in France near the German border where Sister Angelique lived, and found that she had German soldiers as guests. The Germans agreed to turn themselves over to the Deadly Dozen. Although tempers flared between the two groups when one of the Germans tried to rape Erika, one of Sister Angelique's charges, Sister Angelique halted them by taking up a gun and threatening to shoot them. The Deadly Dozen finally departed with the Germans as their prisoners.

(Combat Kelly and his Deadly Dozen#8 - BTS) - The Deadly Dozen performed an underwater obstacle course run in preparation of their next mission, to confront Dr. Sweikert, a sadistic Nazi surgeon. The Deadly Dozen captured Dr. Lola Steimle, and Laurie Livingston impersonated her in order to enter Sweikert's facility, with Kelly disguised as her driver.

(Combat Kelly and his Deadly Dozen#9) - After 24 hours, the Deadly Dozen went to rescue Kelly and Laurie, and quickly lost Doc Watson and Jake Jensen while fighting their way to the facility. The hospital put down steel doors, trapping them. Sample had no time to pick the lock as they were pinned down by soldiers, so he took out a grenade and detonated it, using his body to shield his comrades from the explosion. The others were astonished by Sample's heroism.

Comments: Created by Gary Friedrich, Dick Ayers and Mike Esposito.

by Prime Eternal

Donald Sample should not be confused with:

Images taken from:
Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos#98, cover
Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos#98, page 1, panel 8

Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#1 (June, 1972) - Gary Friedrich (writer), Dick Ayers (pencils), Jim Mooney (inks), Stan Lee (editor)
Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#4 (December, 1972) - Gary Friedrich (writer), Dick Ayers (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Roy Thomas (editor)
Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#6 (April, 1973) - Gary Friedrich (writer), Dick Ayers (pencils), Vince Colletta (inks), Roy Thomas (editor) Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#7 (June, 1973) - Gary Friedrich (writer), Dick Ayers (pencils), John Tartaglione (inks), Roy Thomas (editor)
Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen#9 (October, 1973) - Gary Friedrich (writer), Dick Ayers (pencils), Vince Colletta (inks), Roy Thomas (editor)

Last updated: 05/21/05

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Non-Marvel Copyright info
All other characters mentioned or pictured are ™  and 1941-2099 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved. If you like this stuff, you should check out the real thing!
Please visit The Marvel Official Site at:

Back to Characters