- "You showed courage. Leaving like that."
"I laundered my credits and sneaked away. Not the bravest thing anyone's ever done."
"You defied the Empire alone. You gave up the life and career you'd built rather than violate your principles. I'd call that brave."
- ―Wedge Antilles complimenting Thane Kyrell
Thane Kyrell, later designated AV547 in the Imperial Navy, was a human male from the mountainous and remote planet of Jelucan, an Outer Rim Territory that was annexed by the Empire eleven years before the Battle of Yavin. He pursued his childhood dream of becoming a pilot with his best friend Ciena Ree, attending and graduating from the Royal Imperial Academy on Coruscant. After witnessing the destruction of Alderaan and the enslavement of the Bodach'i species on Kerev Doi, Thane soon joined the Rebel Alliance to end the tyranny and oppression of the Empire.
After spending some time as the co-pilot and navigator of the Wookiee Lohgarra, Thane joined Corona Squadron, an X-wing starfighter squadron. He would fight in several key battles of the Galactic Civil War including the Battle of Hoth, the Battle of Endor, and the Battle of Jakku. Despite fighting in opposite sides, Thane and Ciena maintained a deep connection with each other that eventually blossomed into romance.
Following the Battle of Endor, Kyrell supported the New Republic, the successor government to the Rebel Alliance. He and Ciena crossed paths again during the Battle of Jakku when he rescued her from a stricken Imperial Star Destroyer.
- 1 Biography
- 1.1 Early life
- 1.2 Meeting Ciena and the Grand Moff
- 1.3 An enduring friendship
- 1.4 Imperial Academy
- 1.5 Imperial service
- 1.6 Deserting the Empire
- 1.7 Serving the Rebellion
- 1.8 New Republic
- 2 Personality and traits
- 3 Skills and abilities
- 4 Behind the scenes
- 5 Appearances
- 6 Sources
- 7 Notes and references
Thane Kyrell was an aristocrat from the planet Jelucan in the Outer Rim Territories. He was the son of Oris and Ganaire Kyrell and had an older brother named Dalven Kyrell. Thane and his family were Second-wavers, a group of affluent migrants that had recently settled on the Outer Rim world of Jelucan. The Second-wavers were preceded by the First Wavers, an earlier group of human settlers who had settled in the valleys of Jelucan over five hundred years before the rise of the Galactic Empire. Most Second-wavers, including the Kyrell family, looked down on the First Wavers as backward peasants. During his childhood, Thane was regularly bullied and intimidated by his older brother, Dalven, whom his parents favored at his expense. Thane also had a strained relationship with his father, who verbally belittled him and physically assaulted him on several occasions.
Meeting Ciena and the Grand Moff
- "Very silly of you. To fling yourself into a fight you would have lost? Never go up against superior forces, lad. It doesn't end well."
- ―Grand Moff Tarkin
At the age of eight, Thane once outsmarted Dalven by identifying the humming engine of a Lambda-class T-4a shuttle while traveling to a ceremony to celebrate the establishment of Imperial rule on Jelucan. After listening to Grand Moff Tarkin's speech, Thane's parents left his older brother Dalven to babysit him while they attended a private function. When Dalven abandoned him to chat with some friends, Thane went behind Tarkin's stage to inspect the Grand Moff's Lambda-class shuttle. There, he came to the rescue of a First Waver girl named Ciena Ree, who was being harassed by a group of Second-waver boys.
Despite being outnumbered and outmatched, Thane sprang to Ciena's defense and fought the bullies. Their fight was interrupted by Grand Moff Tarkin and his entourage, which included several Imperial officers and stormtroopers. While the other boys ran away, Thane and Ciena stayed behind to face Tarkin. After Ciena told Tarkin that Thane had saved her from being beaten up by the older boys, a bemused Tarkin counselled Thane not to fight against superior forces. When Thane replied that he had been counting on Tarkin as his superior force, the Grand Moff praised the boy for his strategic thinking.
Realizing that the two children were curious about the wider galaxy, the Grand Moff quizzed Thane and Ciena about his starship, which they correctly identified as a Lambda-class shuttle. Impressed, Tarkin allowed them to tour his ship and play in the instruments as a cockpit. Having established a rapport with the children, he took the opportunity to encourage them to serve Emperor Sheev Palpatine by joining the Imperial Military when they came of age. In order to reach that goal, they had to gain entrance to one of the Empire's Imperial Academies. Following their meeting with Tarkin, the two children resolved to study hard so that they could become pilots. When Ciena revealed she did not have a flight simulator of her own, Thane kindly allowed her to share his.
An enduring friendship
- "I don't have any ships to practice with, and our only simulator is old."
"You can come practice with me, then."
- ―Ciena and Thane sealing their friendship
For the rest of their childhood, Thane and Ciena bonded over their love of flying and pushed each other to excel. Over the next five years, Ciena regularly visited the Kyrell family's household where she practiced on Thane's flight simulator. Thane was also tutored in mathematics and the sciences by the family's tutor droid CZ-1. While his parents tolerated Ciena, his brother Dalven mocked her for her poverty and "old-fashioned ways." On one occasion, Thane had struck Dalven in the cheek before their parents pulled them apart. Though his brother had forbidden him the use of his V-171 airspeeder, Thane and Ciena flaunted this rule and took rides in the airspeeder.
At the age of thirteen, Thane once managed to sneak out of a mathematics test by bribing CZ-1 with the offer of a lubrication bath, which the droid heartily accepted. After taking a flying fox to his family's hangar, he encountered Ciena, who had arrived in her family's ridgecrawler. After bantering, the two friends borrowed Dalven's airspeeder for a joy ride and flew to their secret hideout, a cave called "The Fortress." After discussing Imperial politics, Thane asked Ciena why she frequently used the phrase "look through my eyes." Ciena then revealed that she had a twin sister named Wynnet Ree who had died a few hours after her birth.
By the age of fourteen, Thane and Ciena were studying for the entrance exams for the Imperial Academy's preparatory course. Since their homeworld of Jelucan had supported the former Confederacy of Independent Systems, the Galactic Empire had imposed a quota on prospective Imperial cadets coming from their world. During revision, Thane encouraged Ciena to persevere despite the odds. While Oris had pulled strings to ensure his older brother Dalven's admission into an Imperial Academy, he did no such favors for his younger son. As a result, Thane had to "pull himself up by his own bootstraps."
Due to their diligence and hard work, Thane and Ciena were admitted into the Jelucan preparatory academy, which prepared locals for the Imperial Academy. At the age of fifteen, Thane's relationship with his father underwent a downward spiral. On one occasion, Oris assaulted his younger son during a fit of rage, leaving punches, bruises, and lashes all over his body. As a result, Thane came to harbor a deep hatred for his father and resolved to gain admission to an Imperial Academy so that he could leave Jelucan for good. Unable to turn to his mother, Thane instead turned to Ciena, who comforted him and attended to the wounds on his back with curative skin sealant.
- "We both plan to serve the Empire for the rest of our lives. We're never going back to Jelucan—not to live, anyway. So we don't have to worry about 'living in the past' or however Deenlark put it."
- ―Ciena and Thane resolving to remain friends at the Royal Academy
As the most accomplished students of the Jelucan academy preparatory courses, Thane and Ciena were selected at the age of sixteen to attend the prestigious Royal Imperial Academy on Coruscant, which supplied officers for the Imperial Navy. The two teenagers were pleased because they would be able to continue their friendship while studying at the Imperial Academy. While Ciena's parents accompanied their daughter, Thane made his own way to the spaceport after wishing his parents farewell. Due to his estranged relationship, Thane was relieved that they did not accompany him. Upon arriving in Coruscant, Thane felt lost and overwhelmed in the city world. By contrast, Ciena was excited because she had spent her entire life preparing for this dream.
After landing on Coruscant, Thane met his room mates Nash Windrider, the son of an Alderaanian carpet maker, and Ved Foslo, a Coruscanti and the son of an Imperial general. While Thane and Nash took an instant liking to each other, the two cadets found their other room mate Foslo arrogant and snobbish. Thane and the other freshmen later attended an induction ceremony where commandant Deenlark exhorted the cadets to put aside their ties to their homeworlds and to redirect their loyalty to the Empire foremost. Despite Deenlark's rhetoric, Thane and Ciena promised to continue their friendship and were relieved to learn that they would be attending some of their classes together. Putting Jelucan behind them, the two resolved to train to be Imperial officers.
For the next three years, Thane endured the Imperial Academy's rigorous curriculum and studied science, mathematics, piloting, and physical training. All cadets were subject to a battery of tests. Due to the challenging curriculum, the Academy had a high attrition rate. Despite the odds, Thane and Ciena continued their studies and earned high rankings in their class. While they challenged each other to excel, both maintained a close friendship. In addition, Thane developed a warm friendship with cadet Windrider. While training together, Thane shared about his difficult childhood growing up on Jelucan including his dysfunctional relationship with his family. Thane was heartened to learn about Windrider's more enlightened upbringing on Alderaan.
About three months after arriving on Coruscant, Thane encountered his brother Dalven at the Imperial military dispensary while collecting a pair of larger boots. Due to their acrimonious relationship, Thane had not kept in touch with his older brother. This was not a warm reunion with Dalven remarking his surprise that Thane had not washed out yet. Thane quickly learned that Dalven had performed poorly in his studies at the Imperial Academy and had been assigned to work as a third class clerical officer. For Thane, this was another instance of him besting his overbearing big brother. As the months passed, Thane's friendship with Ciena blossomed into a romantic relationship, though they did not act on it since the Academy prohibited romantic liaisons between students.
Later, Thane and his fellow cadets took part in a flying exercise called Small Craft Flight which involved riding speeder bikes. This exercise involved the cadets flying through ten Reitgen Hoops near the Royal Academy. While flying, Thane's speeder bike became entangled with Ciena's. With much difficulty, the two managed to land their bikes safely while at the same time winning the race. The flight commander was displeased with the two cadets for finding a loophole in the exercise but reluctantly split the prize and awarded them 25 points each. Fearful that two cadets from the same homeworld were close friends, the Academy's Office of Student Outcomes engineered an incident to split up the two cadets.
The laser cannon incident
- "... I guess we were both idiots together. But the real blame belongs to whatever monster at Student Outcomes did this to us."
"They didn't intend for it to get this bad between us. We did that to ourselves."
- ―Thane and Ciena discussing the laser cannon incident in retrospect
Six months into their first year at the Royal Academy, Thane's relationship with Ciena experienced a serious strain during the "laser cannon" incident. As part of a training exercise, the cadets had to repair the laser cannons on their TIE fighters using improvised spareparts. After Thane and Nash had left the repair bay, an unidentified intruder had managed to gain access to the facility and severed the wires inside the cannon. The intruder also tampered with the door panel, planting a falsified layer of data that implicated Ciena. The following day, Thane's laser cannon failed to fire. After determining it had been sabotaged, commander Harn checked the door computer and found "evidence" that Ciena had been the last person to visit the room after Thane.
Despite the evidence stacked against his friend, Thane believed that Ciena was innocent and that she had been framed. Ciena was summoned to Deenlark's office for disciplining. Ciena protested her innocence and was supported by her classmate Jude Edivon, who presented evidence that someone had tampered with the door computer in order to frame Ciena. Based on the evidence, Jude suspected Thane was the culprit. Thane was promptly summoned to Deenlark's office where the two cadets received a dressing down from the commandant. Unwilling to ascertain the authenticity of the data level, Deenlark failed their laser cannon assignment and downgraded their class rankings.
Following their disciplining, Thane and Ciena assured each other that they did not sabotage the laser cannon and the door computer. When Ciena pointed the finger at the snobbish Ved Foslo, Thane pointed out that his room mate was a "stickler" for the rules. Later, the two cadets met up with Jude, a slicer who was skilled with computer systems. Jude apologized that her earlier analysis had falsely implicated Thane and uncovered evidence that the Office of Student Outcomes had engineered the incident. While Thane was determined to clear his and Ciena's names, Ciena was unwilling to challenge the Academy authorities since she feared jeopardizing her marks and career prospects. A heated argument ensued between the two friends which ended with Thane storming out after Ciena mentioned his hated father.
While Thane and Ciena later reconciled, their friendship was damaged by the "laser cannon" incident. As a result, the two found themselves unable to confide in each other as they had previously. Over next two and a half years, Thane and Ciena devoted their energies to scoring top marks and reaching the top slots of their class. As a result, the two cadets clashed frequently for the top place. During his studies at the Academy, Thane began to feel disillusioned with the Empire's policies. While he questioned the official HoloNet reports which cast the Empire in a positive light, the young cadet still despised the Rebellion as a bunch of terrorists. Still, he conceded that they emerged as a reaction against the Empire's increasing authoritarianism.
By the end of his third year, Thane had been assigned to the elite fighter track while Ciena had been picked for the commander track. While collecting a new set of uniform at the uniform dispensary, Thane reconciled with Ciena and comforted her after learning that her pet muunyak had died on Jelucan. A few weeks before graduating from the Imperial Academy, Thane and Ciena were part of a handful of cadets handpicked to attend a ball at the Imperial Palace. The ball was attended by several Imperial dignitaries including Princess Leia Organa, the daughter of the Alderaanian Senator Bail Organa and a staunch critic of the Emperor's policies. After learning from a drunken Foslo that the Royal Academy had staged the "laser cannon" incident to force them to direct their loyalties toward towards the Empire, Thane and Ciena decided to out side their old differences and fully reaffirmed their friendship and affection.
Upon graduation, Thane was promoted to the rank of lieutenant and assigned to a top secret space station, which was later revealed to be the Death Star. Shortly later, he was joined by Ciena, who had arrived on the Imperial-class Star Destroyer Devastator, which had captured Princess Leia. While stationed on the Death Star, Thane witnessed the destruction of Alderaan and was horrified. Soon after, he was assigned to scout an abandoned Rebel military base that had been built on Dantooine. He soon came to view them as an organized military force that had the potential to orchestrate precise, yet small attacks on any Imperial military installations or minor planets that were under their control. While he was there, the Death Star was destroyed, and the lack of communications from the rest of the Empire left him very worried for Ciena's safety. When he finally did return to the Imperial fleet, he briefly met with Ciena, with whom he shared a first kiss before they were forced to split ways again.
Deserting the Empire
- "We're teaching children to approve of slavery. We're teaching them cruelty is a virtue"
- ―Thane reflecting on the maltreatment of Bodach'i slaves
Already disillusioned with the Empire for the destruction of Alderaan and their massive disregard for the lives lost on the Death Star, he witnessed the maltreatment of Bodach'i slaves on his next posting on Kerev Doi, which pushed him over the edge. Guilt-ridden and horrified by the plight of the alien species, Thane made the decision to desert the Empire. After an awkward chat with Ciena via hologram, Thane put his plan into action the following day. After withdrawing credits from his bank account, he used them to buy spice and then bartered the spice for unmarked credits. Thane used the proceeds to buy civilian clothes and then secured passage on an independent freighter owned by a Falleen pilot.
After deserting the Empire, he visited his home planet Jelucan in order to hide from the Imperial Security Bureau agents that would be tasked to find him. Upon returning to his hometown of Valentia, Thane was dismayed to find the city disfigured by what he regarded as ugly Imperial buildings and walls. While Thane toyed with the idea of returning to his parents, he decided that he was unwilling to submit himself to his father's drunken rages and his mother's outrage. Instead, Thane rented a small flat and subsisted on street food for several days. Having lost his purpose in life, Thane descended into a state of despondency. Ciena was sent to find him, soon discovering him hiding inside his Jelucan flat.
Upon finding Thane, Ciena tried to convince her friend to return to Imperial service. She reassured Thane that he would not be arrested since the Empire had a shortage of qualified officers. However, Thane was adamant that he would never return to the Empire. He recounted his disillusionment arising from the destruction of Alderaan and the enslavement of the Bodach'i. When Ciena pointed out that the rebels murdered their mentor Tarkin and friend Jude, Thane assured her that he would not join the Rebellion. During their meeting, Ciena admitted her disillusionment with the Empire but was unwilling to break her oath. When Thane disagreed, she remarked that second-wavers broke their promises.
Following a tense discussion, Thane and Ciena made love for the first time, but it was short lived. Unable to convince Thane to return to the Empire, Ciena told him to leave Jelucan and catch the next freighter to an independent world. Ciena warned Thane that she would report him to the Empire if he had not left by then. Breaking her oath to the Empire for the first and last time, she warned him not to indenture himself and advised him to find work somewhere in the Outer Rim. Thane reluctantly accepted Ciena's advice and the two embraced each other. To protect Thane, Ciena told her superior officer Captain Ronnadam that he had committed suicide due to his grief over the loss of many comrades aboard the Death Star.
Serving the Rebellion
Aboard the Moa
- "Yeah, I know. But joining the Rebellion—leaving the Empire is one thing, but taking up arms against it is another. The friends I served with before would never force that. Especially the woman I was telling you about, Ciena. She'd never speak to me against if she knew. Not that she's likely to anyway, I guess."
- ―Thane weighing his decision to join the Rebellion with Lohgarra
Seven months after the Battle of Yavin, Thane found work as a pilot and navigator on the Mighty Oak Apocalypse under the Wookiee captain Lohgarra. While Lohgarra hired several itinerant crew members, her only other permanent crew member was a JJH2 model astromech droid. Though Thane concealed his past from the other crew, he confided in Lohgarra. Under Lohgarra's captaincy, Thane and her crew often went on missions to help desperate worlds that were abused or neglected by the Empire, something Thane found fulfilling and purposeful. While helping the Tarsunt engineer Brill and the Ithorian maintenance officer Methwat Tann to deliver a shipment of constructor droids on the cold planet of Zeitooine, he witnessed a local family being arrested by Imperial stormtroopers. Thane was so distressed by the plight of the family that he forgot to buy a new power cell; when Brill questioned him, he claimed that the shops did not have anything in their price range.
Eighteen months after the Battle of Yavin, Thane and Lohgarra took part in a mission to deliver medical supplies to Oulanne following a flood that left many without food, water, and medical supplies. While assisting the relief efforts, he was recruited by Wedge Antilles who had also sent aid from the Alliance to Restore the Republic. Although they did not have much to offer by way of supplies, this valiant display of concern for the people of the systems under their control forced Thane to contemplate joining the Alliance to Restore the Republic. Although he resented them for destroying the Death Star and killing many of his friends, he knew they were his best chance of stopping the cruel acts of the Empire.
Thane subsequently returned to the Mighty Oak Apocalypse to inform Lohgarra of Wedge's offer to bring him to the Rebel Alliance. Lohgarra too felt sympathetic to the Rebels' plight, given that her own people were enslaved by the Empire. However, she stated that if they were to join the Rebels, the decision would have to be unanimously by the crew, which would not happen for some time. He then confided to her his concerns that by joining the Rebellion, it would mean fighting against his friends in the Empire, including Ciena. Lohgarra assured him that the Force had a way of bringing people together when the time was right.
Battle of Hoth
- "Not every place can be fully armored. Think about it. The legs are vulnerable exactly where any creature's legs would be."
"Gotcha. Targeting the joints."
- ―Thane and Yendor flying snowspeeders during the Battle of Hoth
After joining the Rebellion, Thane was assigned to Echo Base on the icy planet of Hoth. As a trained starfighter pilot, Thane was assigned to Corona Squadron. While braving the icy cold, Thane befriended a Rebel pilot named Dak Ralter, who later served as the Rebel Luke Skywalker's gunner during the Battle of Hoth. Despite joining the Rebellion, Thane was uncomfortable with Luke for killing several of his former classmates aboard the Death Star and avoided contact with him. When the Empire discovered their base and attacked Hoth, Thane flew a snowspeeder with the Twi'lek co-pilot Yendor, who served as his gunner.
Thane and Yendor's mission during the battle was to harry the Imperial ground assault forces until the rebel transports could escape into hyperspace. Using Thane's knowledge of the blueprints of an AT-AT and his extensive experience in flying, the two were able to destroy a walker by exploiting the weak spot in the armor of the walker, the ankle. After the last transport had lifted off, the two raced to their X-wings and met with the rebels at the designated rendezvous. As Thane left Hoth, he saw the Imperial fleet and realized that one day he might encounter Ciena in battle and unknowingly kill her.
Unknown to Thane, his lover Ciena learned that he had joined the Rebellion after analyzing footage of his snowspeeder harrying AT-AT walkers during the Battle of Hoth. Due to their love, she did not report him to his Imperial superiors. After reaching the MC80 Star Cruiser Liberty, Corona Squadron's home base, Thane learned from Wedge that Dak died on Hoth, which greatly depressed Thane. As he was handing out equipment to new recruits, he was reunited with his old friend from his days in the Royal Imperial Academy, Kendy Idele, who had also deserted from Imperial service. Thane and his rebel comrades spent the rest of the day account for lost personnel and stock following the retreat from Hoth.
Meeting Mon Mothma
- "It's all right if you still love someone on the other side of this war—as long as you love what you're fighting for even more."
- ―Mon Mothma's advice to Thane
With some time to spare, Thane decided to get himself drunk with jet juice. After stumbling through the Liberty's corridors, he finally decided to sit down against a wall, before an unknown woman appeared to support him and guide him to a chair. In his drunken stupor, Thane spilled out his life story and how much he loved Ciena to the stranger, who then offered him a cup of water. Thane later found himself waking up in his bunk, where a coy Yendor revealed that their squadron was due for a briefing in a half hour. After getting a shower and a treatment from 2-1B, Thane arrived in the briefing and was mortified to discover that the woman who helped him the previous night was none other than Mon Mothma, Chancellor of the Rebel Alliance.
After Mothma told Corona Squadron that they would be permanently based on the Liberty doing special reconnaissance missions for the Rebel Alliance, she requested to speak with Thane privately. Once they were alone, Thane apologized for his previous unprofessional behavior. Mothma told him that she was not concerned with the events from the night before, but wanted to make sure that he did not doubt himself in battle again. He assured her that he was devoted to their cause, and he took heed of her words that it was acceptable to love someone on the other side of the war so long as he loved the principles of the Rebel Alliance more.
Return to Jelucan
- "I'm not going to leave, at least not before my tour of duty ends. If there's any chance that the good in the Empire can outweigh the bad, then it's our duty to preserve it."
"The Empire's rotten to the core. It's our duty to destroy it."
- ―Ciena and Thane disagreed about the Empire
Later, Thane and his fellow Corona Squadron pilots took part in a mission to scout the planet D'Qar for Imperial activity. There had been reports from deep-cover agents on Coruscant that the Empire was shipping large amounts of material for an unknown project, later revealed to be the second Death Star. While Corona Squadron found no sign of Imperial activity, they identified D'Qar as a possible base. After returning to the Liberty, Thane chatted to one of his fellow pilots Kendy, who had been Ciena's former bunk mate at the Imperial Academy. While Kendy respected Ciena, she opined that "good people" were eventually corrupted by the Empire. Following a heated discussion, Thane concluded that the woman he loved was gone.
While listening to Imperial transmissions from his home world of Jelucan, Thane learned that Ciena's mother Verine Ree was being accused in an Imperial court of 'embezzling' funds from the local mines that she managed. This prompted Thane to request a few days leave from his commanding officer, so that he may stand with her family during a time of strife and betrayal. He was granted this leave on the merits that he would return, and that he wouldn't be missing when the Rebel fleet would jump to another system.
When he reached Jelucan, he was alarmed and saddened by the state of his homeworld, where the sky was black with coal mining soot and the mountains were hollowed out from mining. He journeyed through the rapidly modernizing Valentia, awed by the fact that the valley folks and second-wavers were no longer distinguishable from each other. They all now wore factory made clothing supplied by the Empire. Thane rented a ridgecrawler and drove to Ciena's home where he reunited with the now Lieutenant Commander Ree. At Ciena's house, he planted the customary maroon dyed flag into the sandy trench in front, attempting to make amends with her. Throughout their interactions, Thane assumed that Ciena did not suspect he had joined the Rebel Alliance.
The two flew together in Thane's old V-171 airspeeder, and it was as if they were never apart. Returning to the Fortress, their childhood hideout, Ciena revealed that she knew he joined the Rebellion and demanded to know why he would join a group she designated "terrorists" who had killed Jude. Thane passionately defended the rebels and retorted that Palpatine was the terrorist for ruling by fear. Although they could not agree on who was fighting on the right side of the war, there was no denying their passion for each other. They shared a night together and made love a second time under the blankets. Afterwards, Ciena revealed that she knew he was involved in the Battle of Hoth by how he flew his snowspeeder. In turn, Thane told her how he respected his superiors in the Alliance and how they in turn trusted him to return to Jelucan.
Return to the Rebel fleet
- "You abandoned your post to bang your ex? The lieutenant commander in the Imperial Starfleet ex?"
"They're about to promote her to commander."
- ―Smikes confronts Thane in indignation about Thane's visit to Jelucan
After the trial of Ciena's mother, Thane returned to the Rebel fleet. Once back, he disclosed to General Carlist Rieekan and Corona Squadron that he had met with Ciena and her status as an Imperial officer. His admission took everyone by surprise, which quickly made him the least popular member of the squadron. Despite his assurance that his starfighter did not have a tracker, it was checked anyway. General Rieekan remarked that the galaxy was full of other women who didn't fight for the enemy while Smikes chided Kyrell for abandoning his post to "bang his ex." When his friend Yendor warned that Ciena could kill them, Thane angrily defended his judgement and told them to stayed out of his business. While sympathetic, Kendy counselled Thane that his love for Ciena would tear him apart.
Skirmish in the Hudalla system
- "Rebel scum. I can't believe you'd ever stoop so low."
"I can't believe you're still with the Empire. They destroyed your planet, Nash! They killed your entire family! How can you—"
"Never speak of Alderaan to me! Never!"
- ―Thane's heated reunion with his former roommate Nash Windrider
Following his trip to Jelucan, Thane and his fellow Corona Squadron pilots settled on 5251977, a remote planet that served as a base of the Alliance. Due to the world's slow rotation, days and nights lasted weeks. While stationed on 5251977, Thane learned from Yendor that the Alliance Fleet was massing for a planned assault. Thane was further encouraged by the arrival of his Wookiee friend Lohgarra in her ship Mighty Oak Apocalypse. Lohgarra and her crew had decided to throw their support behind the Rebellion.
Ten hours after arriving on 5251977, Thane and Corona Squadron received new orders from Admiral Ackbar, the commander of the Alliance Fleet. Remote sensors had detected an unusually high level of Imperial ships in the Hudalla system. Corona Squadron was ordered to observe the Imperial fleet and to obtain as much intelligence as possible. Upon arriving in the system, Thane and his fellow pilots discovered a large Imperial fleet, which had been massing for the arrival of the Emperor at the second Death Star above the Forest Moon of Endor. While they were assessing the size of the Imperial fleet, Corona Squadron was attacked by a squadron of TIE/IN interceptors led by Ciena Ree and Nash Windrider, his former roommate. Ree had received secret orders from Admiral Piett to let at least one of the starfighters escape.
During the dogfight, Thane remarked that "this galaxy isn't big enough" across the intercom, which was picked up by both Ciena and Nash. While Ciena was horrified at the prospect of having to fight her lover, Nash was furious that Thane had joined the Rebellion and sought to kill him. The only thing that allowed Thane and most of Corona Squadron to escape without heavy casualties was Ree's involvement in shielding Thane's X-wing from Nash while he was preparing to jump to hyperspace. While the Imperials lost two TIE fighters, the only Corona fatality was Smikes, who answered to the callsign Corona Four.
Battle of Endor
- "Corona Four, right behind you."
- ―Thane flew under the call-sign Corona Four during the Battle of Endor
Thane Kyrell then participated in the Battle of Endor, where the role of Corona Squadron was to cover the Gold, Red, Green, and Gray Squadrons as they entered the second Death Star. During the pre-battle briefing, Thane was privy to the details of the rebel assault on the Forest Moon of Endor including Han Solo's ground strike team which was tasked with disabling the deflector shield generator protecting the Death Star.
Two days after the briefing, Thane and the rest of the rebel fleet exited hyperspace above the Endor system. To their horror, they quickly discovered that Han Solo's strike team had not yet disabled the second Death Star's deflector shield. Under General Lando Calrissian's orders, Thane and the other pilots took evasive action when the Imperial fleet launched a swarm of TIE fighters and TIE Interceptors. During the Battle of Endor, Thane witnessed the Death Star's superlaser destroying the Liberty, the MC80 star cruiser that had served as the base of Corona Squadron. Under Calrissian's orders, the remaining rebel starfighters and ships ran circles around the Star Destroyers in order to escape the Death Star's blast.
While they waited for the shield generators on Endor to be taken down, Thane and his fellow Corona pilots Kendy and the Contessa damaged the engines of the Imperial Star Destroyer Subjugator. When the Death Star's shields went down, rebel forces led by General Calrissian, who was flying the Millennium Falcon, destroyed the second Death Star. Since Ciena had reportedly been stationed aboard the Super Star Destroyer Executor, Thane believed that his lover had died and wore a Jelucani mourning band in her honor. While Thane took part in the victory celebrations at Bright Tree Village, he found little joy due to his belief that Ciena had died.
Unknown to Thane, Ciena Ree had indeed survived the Battle of Endor. She avoided death aboard the Executor since she had been flying a TIE Interceptor. However, Ciena was badly wounded when debris from the Death Star collided with her TIE fighter, puncturing her liver. Due to her courage and hard work, Ciena was later promoted to the position of captain aboard the Imperial Star Destroyer Inflictor.
- "How long are you going to wear that?"
"Once I've worn it for one year. I'll take it off."
- ―Kendy and Thane discussing his mourning band
Following the Battle of Endor, the Galactic Empire entered a state of chaos as various Imperial officers and Moffs jockeyed for control of the reigns of succession. The Rebel Alliance was transformed into the New Republic, which established itself as a rival to the fragmenting Empire. Seeking an alternative to Imperial authoritarianism and oppression, many worlds joined the New Republic. Despite his pessimistic outlook, Thane came to regard the New Republic as a fairer and more humane government which sought to address the wrongs of the Empire including slavery, pollution, and devoting more expenditure to civilians. While Thane was taken back by the rapid disintegration of the Empire, he and his fellow comrades found themselves still fighting an all-out war from the Imperial remnants.
Barely a year after the Battle of Endor, Thane and his fellow Corona pilots took part in the defense of the planet Naboo and helped beat back an Imperial fleet. This marked the third attempt made by the Empire to attack Naboo, which had joined the New Republic. Following the dogfight, Yendor invited Thane and the other pilots to visit the Gungan city of Otoh Gunga in order to taste a dessert that took at least four hominids to eat. However, Thane politely declined his friend's offer because he was still mourning Ciena, unaware that she had survived Endor. Due to his friendship with Ciena, Thane had also gained a greater appreciation of the Force, something that mystified his fellow pilots, including Kendy. With the anniversary of the Battle of Endor only a few weeks away, Thane vowed to remove his mourning band.
Battle of Jakku
- "You want to play this rough? Fine. We'll play rough."
"Get your rebel ass off my bridge!"
"I'm going to rescue you whether you like it or not."
- ―Thane and Ciena fighting aboard the Inflictor
One year after the destruction of the second Death Star, Thane took part in the Battle of Jakku, the last major battle of the Galactic Civil War. As an Imperial defector, Thane, recently promoted to commander, was placed in charge of a boarding party that was tasked with capturing the Imperial Star Destroyer Inflictor for the New Republic, whose nascent starfleet faced a critical shortage of ships. Using their knowledge of Imperial ship design and procedures, the New Republic forces boarded the Inflictor. Thane's knowledge of Star Destroyers came to good use when the strike team successfully disabled the ship's engines and self-destruct system. Unknown to Thane, his lover Ciena Ree was the captain of the Inflictor during that assault. After receiving confirmation that the Inflictor was on a crashing course, New Republic pilot Iden Versio overheard on her comms that they were sending a recovery team to extract Kyrell and the boarding party.
During the fighting, Thane recognized the voice of Ciena Ree being played throughout the vessel on the intercoms, calling for the evacuation of all Imperial personnel within the designated time limits to prevent the Inflictor from being captured by the Republic forces. Telling the rest of his crew to abandon the ship, he headed to the bridge, which Ciena had sealed off. Remembering the quote Ciena used to show her deceased sister beautiful or surprising moments in her life, "Look through my eyes," he cracked the password and entered the bridge. Although Ciena's oath required her to see the ship destroyed, he tried to take her with him, and the two fought. Eventually, Thane managed to regain his blaster and stunned her and carried her away to an escape pod, narrowly ejecting into the atmosphere in time to survive.
Thane and an unconscious Ciena survived their crash-landing on the sands of Jakku. After landing, they were picked up by a squad of New Republic soldiers. Realizing that Ciena had been wounded, Thane called for the team's medic to attend to her injuries. Instead the soldiers pulled out their blasters while their leader clamped a pair of magnetic binders on Ciena's wrists. Before Thane could utter a word of protest, he realized that the New Republic soldiers were merely doing their duty: capturing a high-ranking Imperial officer who would be tried for her crimes.
- "I wish you had left me aboard the Inflictor."
"If you're waiting for me to apologize for saving your life, you'll be waiting a while. But I understand why you feel that way."
- ―Ciena and Thane reflecting on the Battle of Jakku
Following the Battle of Jakku, Thane finally managed to visit Ciena in prison after a week of repeated attempts. Ciena had finally relented but had to wait for Thane to return from a mission. While Ciena was upset that Thane had not allowed her to die, he insisted that he done the right thing. Although Ciena had remained loyal to the Empire, she could see its faults and wished that her oath no longer stood. She thought that the New Republic would make an example out of her, torturing and executing her, but Thane assured her that even if she didn't give up any intelligence, the Republic did not treat its prisoners of war that way and were very lenient. He remained confident in the goodness and fairness of the Republic, vowing to wait for her as long as it took so they could be together. Ciena reluctantly agreed to accept Thane's offer of friendship.
Meanwhile, Thane's former friend commander Nash Windrider withheld the truth about Thane's survival from his older brother lieutenant Dalven Kyrell, who was serving as his personal assistant. In private, he hated Thane for betraying the Empire and regarded him as a "master deceiver" and believed that his dysfunctional relationship with his parents had driven him into the arms of the Rebellion.
Personality and traits
- "...The problem here is that you're questioning yourself. Self-doubt will cripple you more surely than fear ever could. I hear you're an outstanding pilot, Kyrell. Moment to moment, I feel certain you'll do your duty. However, if you fall apart after every major engagement, you'll self-destruct before long. Many people in the Rebellion have friends or family who serve the Empire in some capacity, or on planets or ships that may fare badly in this war. You aren't the only one with conflicts."
- ―Mon Mothma counseling Thane to overcome his self-doubt and guilt
Thane Kyrell was a human male with reddish-blonde hair. When he was eight years old, Thane was considered to be short for his age but had large hands and feet. As an adult, Kyrell was a tall well-built man. His hair also turned a reddish hue during his adult years. As he reached his full height, he was the third-tallest member of his class at the Academy. Thane had a difficult relationship with his family. His father Oris Kyrell was a harsh disciplinarian who did not hesitate to use physical force to discipline his children. His older brother Dalven regularly bullied and belittled him. While he got on slightly better with his mother Ganaire, he did not receive much love and affection from his family. This dysfunctional relationship was best reflected when none of his family members accompanied him during his sent-off to the Royal Imperial Academy on Coruscant.
As a young man on Jelucan, Thane was never interested in drinking. When other boys at school would get wasted on festival nights, Thane remembered never feeling the urge to join them. At some point, he eventually developed a taste for Andoan wine.
Thane had a warm and deep relationship with his friend Ciena Ree, which dated back to their childhood. Despite being outnumbered and outmatched, Thane bravely defended her against several second-waver bullies until Grand Moff Tarkin intervened. To compensate for his strained relationship with his parents and brother, Thane developed a strong friendship with Ciena that eventually blossomed into a romantic relationship. The two continued their loving relationship despite fighting on opposite sides during the Galactic Civil War. Thane's love for Ree led him to forcibly rescue her during a perilous mission during the Battle of Jakku.
As a child, Thane had a passion for starships and piloting and aspired to join the Imperial Navy. He was a hardworking and talented student who won the respect of his peers and instructors. Despite his promising career as an elite pilot, Thane became disillusioned with the Empire after witnessing the destruction of Alderaan and the enslavement of Bodach'i aliens on Kerev Doi. After descending into a state of despair, Thane found work as a co-pilot and navigator for the Wookiee Lohgarra and subsequently joined the Rebellion. While Thane was not an idealist, he believed that the Rebellion and their promised New Republic would be a more just and fair government than the Empire. As a starfighter pilot, Thane joined the Rebel Alliance's Starfighter Corps and flew in Corona Squadron.
Thane believed that the Rebel Alliance and their New Republic was a force for good in the galaxy. Despite being a firm supporter of the Rebellion, Thane struggled with the knowledge that many of his former Imperial Academy classmates including Ciena and Nash Windrider were fighting on the other side. The rebel leader and future Chancellor Mon Mothma helped Thane to overcome his self doubts and despair by assuring him that he could still love Ciena provided he was still loyal to the Rebellion. Thane also found it difficult to speak with Luke Skywalker, the young rebel pilot who destroyed the Death Star. Thane had a friend named Jude Edivon who had perished aboard the Death Star.
After the Battle of Hoth, Thane was surprised to see another Academy classmate, Kendy Idele, turn up with a group of new recruits. Thane admired her for her skill with a blaster. Later, Thane joined his comrades at a party, drinking engine-room hooch. Thane began to drink and even played sabacc. Upset at the loss of his friend Dak Ralter and missing his friend Ciena, Thane decided to drink a lot, eventually becoming so drunk that he could not find his way back to his bunk.
After a briefing for a scouting mission to the Hudalla System, Thane thought that the plan sounded crazy, citing Admiral Ackbar as deluded when he dismissed them by saying "May the Force be with you."
Skills and abilities
- "You brought that ship in yesterday? That was a nice piece of flying."
- ―Wedge Antilles complimenting Thane's piloting skills
As a starfighter pilot and former Imperial cadet, Thane Kyrell was a skilled pilot who was selected for the Imperial Navy's elite track. He knew how to operate a blaster and could also engage in hand-to-hand combat. Thane knew how to improvise a laser cannon using spare parts. After deserting the Empire, he put his skills to good use by working as the Wookiee Lohgarra's co-pilot and navigator. Due to his training at the Imperial Academy and knowledge of Star Destroyer layouts, he was handpicked for a New Republic mission to capture an Imperial Star Destroyer during the Battle of Jakku.
Behind the scenes
Thane Kyrell is one of the two main protagonists of Claudia Gray's 2015 young-adult novel Lost Stars, which was published as part of the multimedia Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens series that was launched to promote The Force Awakens movie. Along with Ciena Ree, Thane serves as one of the two main point-of-view characters in the novel.
- Star Wars Battlefront II (Mentioned only)
- Lost Stars (First appearance, simultaneous with Lost Stars audiobook)
- Lost Stars audiobook (First appearance, simultaneous with Lost Stars)
- Lost Stars webcomic
- "Blaster"—Star Wars Insider 159
- "Blaster"—Star Wars Insider 160
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary
- "50 Things to Notice in Star Wars: The Force Awakens"—Star Wars Insider 165
- Star Wars: Complete Locations (Indirect mention only)
- Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game – ARC-170 Expansion Pack (Card: )
- Star Wars: Galactic Atlas (First pictured)
- Star Wars: On the Front Lines
- Star Wars Super Graphic: A Visual Guide to a Galaxy Far, Far Away
- Star Wars Helmet Collection 35 (Databank A-Z: Kyber Crystals–Laser Cannons)
- Star Wars: X-Wing Second Edition – Rebel Alliance Conversion Kit (Card: ) (Reissued in T-65 X-Wing Expansion Pack, Skystrike Academy Squadron Pack)
- Star Wars: Women of the Galaxy
- (Indirect mention only)
Notes and references
- Lost Stars
- Lost Stars states that Thane Kyrell was eight years old when Wilhuff Tarkin visited Jelucan. Since Lost Stars also establishes that Tarkin's visit occurred eight years after the formation of the Galactic Empire, which Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates to 19 BBY, and Thane's mother Ganaire says that he is as old as the Empire itself, it can be deduced that Kyrell was born that year.
- Star Wars: On the Front Lines
- Star Wars Battlefront II