"You always have to poke the gundark."
"Just following your lead."
―Okadiah and Kanan Jarrus[src]

Okadiah Garson was a male human thorilide miner and owner of the bar called The Asteroid Belt on the planet Gorse. He took Kanan Jarrus under his wing, giving him a home and a place to work at his bar, as well as securing him a job as an explosives freighter pilot for Moonglow. He died when Count Vidian destroyed part of Cynda. He was found by Jarrus, but died before he could be rescued.

Biography[edit | edit source]

Background[edit | edit source]

"There's something you should know. You're about to mangle the man who knows how to mine thorilide better than anyone."
"Doubtful. He can't have the strength to dig or haul much."
"He teaches those who do..."
―Kanan standing up for Okadiah against Count Vidian[src]

Okadiah Garson was a Gorsian human male who lived during the Age of the Empire. He had several jobs including working as the foreman of a Moonglow Polychemical mining team on the mining moon of Cynda and running a cantina called The Asteroid Belt on the planet Gorse, which was located in a former mining neighbourhood known as the Pits. He worked for the mining industry in the Gorse system for thirty years.[2]

A few months before the Gorse conflict, Okadiah met the Great Jedi Purge survivor Kanan Jarrus, who broke up a brawl at his cantina. Out of gratitude, Okadiah secured Kanan a freighter-pilot job with Moonglow and allowed the Jedi Padawan to rent the flophouse next door to The Asteroid Field. Kanan regarded Okadiah as a good landlord due to his ample supply of liquor. Okadiah hired Kanan to driver his ancient hoverbus, ferrying miners between the Moonglow refinery in Shaketown and his cantina. Kanan came to regard Okadiah as the father that he never had.[2]

Encountering Count Vidian[edit | edit source]

"You're definitely too old."
"Yeah? Well, you're [Count Vidian] too ugly. What are you supposed to be?"
―Okadiah's dangerous encounter with Count Vidian[src]

In 11 BBY,[1] Okadiah took a ride aboard Kanan's freighter Expedient during a work trip to Cynda. While the Galactic Empire had designated Cynda a mining moon, it had once been a nature reserve until Minerax Consulting produced a report claiming that Gorse's moonward side had exhausted all of its thorilide mining reserves. On the way, Okadiah took a nap while Kanan navigated through the space traffic. While dreaming, Okadiah overhead Kanan having an altercation via intercom with an Imperial officer named Captain Rae Sloane. From Kanan, Okadiah learned that the Imperial Star Destroyer Ultimatum had entered the Gorse system and destroyed a laggard freighter called Cynda Dreaming. Garson was acquainted with one of the Ithorian crew members who was a regular patron at his cantina.[2]

As the Expedient entered one of Cynda's caverns, Kanan's freighter narrowly scraped against another personnel shuttle. After Kanan got into a heated exchange with the Devaronian Yelkin and several other miners, Okadiah came to his friend's defense by reminding the other miners that Kanan was carrying a shipment of Baradium-357, a highly volatile explosive used to break up the thorilide caverns. He also urged the other miners to be on their best behavior since Moonglow's boss Lal Grallik and an Imperial efficiency expert Count Denetrius Vidian were inspecting the Cynda mines. To encourage his work crew, Okadiah promised to host an alcohol party at his cantina to honor the death of a the crew of the Cynda Dreaming. He even offered to pick them up and drive them home.[2]

After the crowd had dispersed, Okadiah asked Kanan about his perceived lack of interest in winning friends and influence. He also asked Kanan about his transient lifestyle before asking the freight pilot whether he could work at The Asteroid Field that night. Kanan obliged provided Okadiah could afford to pay him. The two then parted company with Kanan unloading a supply of baradium-357 from the Expedient to deliver to Lal. Okadiah's work shift coincided with Count Vidian's inspection of the Cynda mines. Displeased with the rate of thorilide production, the Emperor had dispatched Vidian to speed up production in the Gorse system. Thorilide was vital to the rapidly expanding Imperial Navy since it was used to shield starships from turbolaser fire.[2]

One of Count Vidian's first acts was to impose an age cap on the mining work force on Cynda. Due to his old age, Okadiah was among those miners who were laid off. Garson had a personal encounter with the cyborg industrialist when Vidian found him kneeling on the ground as he was cleaning his pick. Vidian grabbed the old man by the scruff of his collar and told him he was "too old." Okadiah then retorted that the Count was "too ugly". Angered by Okadiah's perceived jibe about his cyborg body, Vidian tightened his grip on the miner's neck and joked about flaying him. Before Vidian could do any harm, he was accosted by Kanan, who pointed a blaster straight at the Count.[2]

Undaunted by Kanan, Vidian dismissed the freight pilot as a gunslinger and suggested that he was the same saboteur who was running loose around the mines. When Kanan demanded to know what Vidian was doing, Count Vidian insisted that he was carrying out the work of the Emperor. Kanan then responded that it would be unwise for Vidian to murder a man who knew a lot about thorilide mining. When Vidian doubted Okadiah's usefulness on account of his frailty, Kanan countered that Okadiah could mentor younger miners and suggested that he helped boost Moonglow's output. Swayed by Kanan's argument, Vidian spared Okadiah's life since he had already murdered someone else and had a schedule to keep. Unknown to Okadiah and Kanan, this altercation was witnessed by both the rebel operative Hera Syndulla and the surveillance operator Zaluna Myder.[2]

Able to keep his job and having survived a narrow brush with death, Okadiah and his miners headed to Zone Forty-Two. Unknown to Okadiah, the dissident miner Skelly had planned to conduct a test bombing there. A staunch opponent of mining on Cynda, Skelly was researching the effects of the blast in operations on Cynda's fragile structure. Within the past five years, Skelly had alienated the mining establishment and lost several jobs for his criticism of mining operations on Cynda. Despite running into trouble with the Empire for making "seditious" remarks, Skelly managed to conduct his test bombing, which created another cave-in that disrupted mining operations on Cynda. Skelly was subsequently captured by Kanan, who was angered that Skelly had endangered the lives of other miners. Not wanting to get into trouble with the Empire, Kanan handed him over to Moonglow, who made preparations to hand him over to the Empire. However, Skelly escaped due to the intervention of Hera.[2]

An atypical night[edit | edit source]

"I hate to miss anything but a host must entertain. Jarrus, lad, hold the fort. Let's talk again sometime."
―Okadiah on the night that Kanan, Zaluna, Hera, and Skelly first met[src]

That night, Okadiah would host three special visitors who would play an important role in the coming Gorse conflict: the disillusioned surveillance operator Zaluna Myder, who had come to pass a sensitive data cube from her friend Hetto to the rebel Hera; the rebel operative Hera, who had come to meet Hetto; and Skelly, who had come to the cantina to seek Kanan's help in procuring his Moonglow ID card. After discovering that prolonged blasting activities would cause Cynda to fracture, Skelly wanted to convince Count Vidian to end all mining operations on that moon. Skelly had learned that Count Vidian was conducting a tour of the Moonglow Polychemical facility.[2]

Okadiah encountered his bouncer Kanan, who had just incapacitated a miner who had come to settle an old score. After observing Kanan's bruised state, he quickly learned that the freight pilot had been involved in a fight with several members of the Sarlaccs criminal gang at Philo's Fueling Station in Shaketown nearby. Kanan told Okadiah he had gotten embroiled in the fight because of a woman. Shortly later, a hooded female Sullustan named Zaluna Myder enter the cantina. Due to Zaluna's timely arrival, Okadiah mistakenly assumed that she was the woman Kanan had fought for until he was corrected by the freighter pilot. While Kanan went to discuss a private matter with Zaluna, Okadiah continued entertaining his other patrons with a game of sabacc.[2]

Shortly later, Hera arrived looking for Hetto but found Zaluna, who promptly informed her about Hetto's imprisonment and secret investigation of the Empire's activities. Okadiah arrived at the cantina seeking Kanan's help but was rebuffed by both Kanan and Hera, who thought that his plan to reason with Vidian had little chance of success. Okadiah's arrival was quickly followed by a stormtrooper patrol, who were looking for the fugitive. Despite their disagreement with Skelly, Okadian and Kanan hid him from the Imperials inside a storage closet. They managed to fool the Imperials into believing that a drunken Wookiee was locked inside the closet. Unwilling to risk upsetting a Wookiee, the Imperials promptly left the cantina.[2]

After the Imperials had left, Kanan asked Okadiah to vouch for his character to Hera. Okadiah backed his friend up by telling the Twi'lek rebel that Kanan was a fine pilot, an occasional humanitarian, a "somewhat tolerable" house guest, and a worthy spouse. When Kanan asked Okadiah about whether he had ever encountered a man named Lemuel Tharsa, Garson replied he had never encountered such a man among his mining crew. However, he suggested that Boss Lal might know the man if he had worked in the refineries or the Guild administration. However, he warned Kanan not to look at his personnel records to avoid finding out his age. Kanan and Hera then departed to recuperate for a new shift the following diurnal day.[2]

Trouble on Gorse[edit | edit source]

"Apparently whoever went on this joyride shot up a bunch of stormtroopers and did a hundred thousand credits' worth of property damage. Is there something you want to tell me?"
―Okadiah confronting Kanan about his entanglement with the Empire[src]

The following day, Okadiah took a ride on the Moonglow hoverbus with Kanan driving the vehicle. Okadiah told Kanan that he had befriended Hera and they had decided to take a vacation on the planet Naboo. Knowing Hera's involvement in the rebellion, Kanan cautioned his friend that Hera was a woman with a mission. Kanan told Okadiah he was not flying bombs today but was showing Hera the sights on Gorse. In secret, Kanan was helping Hera to infiltrate the Moonglow facility in order to spy on Count Vidian, who was conducting an inspection. Okadiah and his fellow miners took a transport for their work shift on Cynda while Hera and Kanan stayed behind on Cynda.[2]

In his absence, Kanan, Hera, and Skelly became caught up in a plot by Count Vidian to detonate Cynda in order to increase the Gorse system's thorilide production rate and to meet the Emperor's new quota. In secret, Vidian planned to destroy Cynda's thorilide crystals in order to discredit his rival Baron Lero Danthe, who was involved in surface mining operations. Since Vidian owned stakes in the comet-chasing industry, he wanted the comet-chasers to harvest the thorilide before they disintegrated within a year. After Skelly made two failed attempts to assassinate Vidian, Kanan and Hera escaped their Imperial pursuers in the hoverbus and dumped it in a quarry. There, they encountered Zaluna, who had accidentally stowed aboard the hoverbus' restroom.[2]

After escaping their Imperial entanglement, the four rebels sought refuge at Okadiah's cantina. Upon arriving back, Okadiah was greeted by his friend Kanan. Okadiah had just received news that Moonglow's Boss Lal had died when a groundquake knocked her into a vat of xenoboric acid at the refinery. As an acquaintance of Lal, Okadiah disputed the veracity of this report and believed that she had been murdered by Count Vidian. He also added that the Empire had rerouted Moonglow's personnel transports to Calladan's field, causing a traffic jam. Okadiah had been forced to take a hovercab to The Asteroid Field.[2]

Okadiah then told Kanan that he had just found out that the Empire had commandeered his Smoothride hoverbus to the spaceport and that someone had stolen it from there and taken it on a joyride. While pouring two glasses of alcohol, Okadiah continued that the thief had shot several stormtroopers and did a hundred thousand credits' worth of damage to the bus. Okadiah asked Kanan whether he or Hera were responsible for the damage to the hoverbus. While neither confirming or denying his responsibility, Kanan told Okadiah that someone had just deposited several credits in his safe to compensate for the damage to the bus. Okadiah seemed satisfied with Kanan's explanation and compensation and the two drank a toast in honor of the late Boss Lal.[2]

The last shift[edit | edit source]

"Ah, you... listen. This boy [Kanan]... is good to have around. You ought to ... stick by him. Thinks ... he needs..."
―Okadiah's last advice to Hera[src]

The following day, Okadiah traveled for another work shift on Cynda. This proved to be his last work shift because Count Vidian had decided to conduct a test bombing in order to allay Captain Rae Sloane and the Imperial Navy's concerns that destroying Cynda would cause the moon's thorilide crystals to disintegrate. Okadiah witnessed several stormtroopers ordering the miners to evacuate Zone Sixty-Six before being caught up in a massive explosion that destroyed the mining facilities and killed many miners. Okadiah was crushed beneath debris and succumbed serious injuries which subsequently led to his death.[2]

Okadiah managed to last long enough for Kanan and his companions to find him on Cynda's surface. Using Okadiah's distress beacon, they found his leg pinned under an elevator car. Kanan managed to fasten an oxygen mask around the dying old man. Hera and Kanan managed to free his legs from the wreckage but were unable to save Okadiah. Before he died, he told Kanan and Hera that the Empire was responsible for the explosion on Cynda. He also told Hera that Kanan was a good person to have around and to stick by him. Kanan and Hera buried Okadiah's body in a side grotto and covered it with rocks. To honor Okadiah's memory, Kanan and Hera resolved to stop Cynda's plot to detonate Cynda during the ensuing Gorse conflict.[2]

Personality and traits[edit | edit source]

"Gentlemen, I think a maxim is in order: Do not aggravate the man [Kanan] who carries high explosives."
"You take in some real pieces of work, boss."
"Like I did all of you, one time or another. Let's get the shift started... And let me add—in honor of that poor sap outside who got himself blown to smithereens—it'll be happy hour all tonight at The Asteroid Field. We'll even pick you up and drive you home."
―Okadiah diffusing a fight between Yelkin and Kanan[src]

Okadiah Garson was an elderly human man with white hair and a beard. He was a frequent drinker of alcohol and drank it when someone got hurt in the mines of the mining moon Cynda, which happened nearly everyday. Unlike Kanan who preferred using physical force, Okadiah preferred to win over people by using diplomacy and persuasion to diffuse conflict. Despite the rough nature of his life and his work, Okadiah had a good sense of humor and was known for his cheerful temperament even in the face of trouble. Despite his old age, Okadiah was a skilled miner who knew how to mine thorilide well. He was regarded by Kanan as a mentor for the younger miners.[2]

The Jedi Purge survivor Kanan came to regard Okadiah as a father figure since he had been separated from his parents at a young age. Viewing Kanan as a fellow with nowhere to go, Okadiah took pity on the young drifter and helped him to find work in the Gorse system. Okadiah did not want to get in trouble with the Empire and was displeased when Kanan and Hera got his hoverbus into an "Imperial entanglement." Despite his differences with Kanan, Okadiah still held Kanan in high regard a fine pilot, occasional humanitarian, and a good companion for Hera. Okadiah was also well acquainted with Lal Grallik, whom he regarded as an employer that prioritized the safety of her staff, and was skeptical of the official Imperial account that her death was accidental.[2]

Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]

Okadiah Garson first appeared as a secondary character in John Jackson Miller's 2014 novel A New Dawn, which was the first in a new line of Canon novels approved by the Lucasfilm Story Group. Most of his lines are told from the point of view of Kanan Jarrus, one of the main characters.

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Sources[edit | edit source]

Notes and references[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Star Wars Rebels: The Visual Guide states that Kanan and Hera met on Gorse six years prior to the events of Star Wars Rebels, referring to the events of A New Dawn. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas states that Rebels starts in the year 5 BBY and so using basic maths it can be concluded that the events of A New Dawn take place eleven years before the Battle of Yavin in 11 BBY.
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 2.21 2.22 2.23 2.24 2.25 A New Dawn
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