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Originally a Lieutenant and commander of his unit Mustang Company in the U.S. Marine Corps, he was deployed to Terekestan in April, 2144. He disobeyed a direct order to abort mission and retreat while in combat, from Commander Dover and saved twenty to thirty good marines. Still his superiors decided to court martial him for disobeying the order. He was stripped of all rank, and demoted to private and combat engineer. Captain Ferritta was his defense. The tribunal judging him included Colonel Thompson, General Schine, Colonel Sack (prosecutor), and General Hadfield.
He was slated for death penalty for treason but his attorney made plea bargain to save him by having him redeployed to Mars as a Marine private within 48 hours instead of going to trial, and transfered as a private in the 'space marines' (a subset of the of the marines) with a commitment of ten years, with a minimum of two years on mars as punishment due to his bad conduct.
He would witness the First Outbreak in March 13, 2145, as well as the second outbreak around the same time.
John Kane defeated a clone of the Cyberdemon, and returned to Marine command to debrief with General Hayden but lost his leg when a zombie shot it off, and then blacked out. He was patched up and helped off the planet along with many other survivors.
Titles and nicknames
- Killer Kane
Behind the scenes
His background is not quite the same as the protagonist of Doom 3.
- You are a marine, one of Earth’s toughest, hardened in combat and trained for action. Shortly after reporting for duty at the Union Aerospace Corporation’s Mars research facility, a massive demonic invasion overwhelms the base, leaving chaos, horror and uncertainty in its wake. As one of only a few survivors, you must use overwhelming firepower and all of your combat skill to battle through the demon hordes, find out what went wrong and prevent the evil from spreading. Only you stand between Hell and Earth
The Doom 3 novels Worlds on Fire and Maelstorm, which has the similar Doom 3 storyline with few modifications, the name of the protagonist is John Kane, who has a similar backstory of military indiscretion as the original marine (Original Doom).
The novels are set in March, 2145, where as the game's story is set in November 2145. They have Kane traveling to Mars over a year before main events of the game in 2144.
The ending of Kane's story in the novels is significantly different than it is for the Marine in the game. As there are many survivors in the novel, and in the game the playable Marine(B.J. Blazkowicz.) never lost his leg.
He shares his surname with Matthew Kane, the protagonist of Quake 4.
The Doom RPG/Id Universe/multiverse (timeline) references some characters from the novel. However, it is not clear if the Doom 3 represents some seperate 'events' that take place before Doom 3, or is simply an alternate universe adaptation of Doom 3 game. The original Doom/Doom 2/Doom 3's protagonist is the son or grandson of Commander Keen, and is of the Blazkowicz line according to Tom Hall (see B.J. Blazkowicz III).