|Unit Profile (as of 3067)|
|CO||Major Cheryl Wannamaker|
Founded by Oberon Confederation native Major Cheryl Wannamaker, the newly-formed Wannamaker's Widowmakers were heading to the Hiring Hall on Outreach when they made the disastrous choice to arrive via a Pirate Point above the planet. The blunder was compounded by the Widowmakers' Union-class DropShip suffering a radio failure and a lack of knowledge as to the proper approach protocol. The unit was unaware they were entering restricted airspace above Remus and assumed the WDS Beowulf off their port side was merely an escort. Still continuing on their course, the WarShip opened fire, ultimately destroying the Widowmakers' DropShip and inflicting heavy losses on the newborn unit. 
An enraged Wannamaker pushed the Mercenary Review and Bonding Commission for compensation and censure of the Dragoons, but the MRBC refused, insisting the Widowmakers were in the wrong, for not heaving to at the sight of a WarShip, or sending a shuttle to explain their communications problems and reprimanding the JumpShip captain for using a pirate point. Bitter and frustrated, the Widowmakers salvaged what they could and took the first contract that would get them off Outreach.  Rebuilding on the fly, over the next two years, Major Wannamaker recruited members of other shattered commands and increased the Widowmakers’ integrity and experience by taking small, short-term contracts first in the Chaos March and later in the Periphery.
FedCom Civil War
As the Federated Commonwealth slid ever closer toward civil war, the Widowmakers—fresh from a long pirate-hunting stint for the Taurian Concordat approached representatives from both sides for possible employment, only to be rebuffed in favor of commands perceived to be more reliable. Undaunted by this setback, Major Wannamaker continued advertising for employment, and the Widowmakers moved back to the Inner Sphere to set up shop on Galatea. Arriving after Group W finished putting down planet-wide riots that broke out shortly before the start of the FedCom Civil War, the Widowmakers hired on with Galatean City authorities and helped to keep the peace in the wake of Group W’s departure, remaining there ever since. Wannamaker, however, was said to be negotiating a lucrative offer for work in the Chaos March again, and may be taking her unit off Galatea soon.
The Widowmakers were hired by the Word of Blake to train Protectorate Militia divisions on Epsilon Eridani. The contract included a provision for new equipment, including Union-class DropShips. However the equipment wasn't a straight swap, but a credit. This led the Widowmakers into the company store syndrome. In late 3070 they were ordered to relocate to Outreach. While garrisoning Outreach, the Widowmakers salvaged Dragoon equipment and sold it to other mercenary groups.
The Wannamaker's Widowmakers acted as the Blakist garrison on Outreach for years during the Jihad, until the liberation of Outreach in late 3077; it was discovered by the allied coalition forces that during the course of their garrison duties on Outreach, the Widowmakers had suffered heavy casualties at the hands of a rebel group named the Four Horsemen, led by an individual using the name Tara Lucas. They also lost several DropShips to the surviving members of the Seventh Kommando who were on Outreach.
Major Cheryl Wannamaker’s grudge against Wolf’s Dragoons still simmers. In 3061, she officially pulled the Widowmakers from the MRBC and closed their offices in the Dragoons’ Hiring Hall after moving to Galatea, having had her fill of what she termed “Dragoon hypocrisy.” Though the resulting loss of their official mercenary rating has hampered their ability to find work (the Widowmakers have yet to re-register, even with the Galatean MRBC office), Major Wannamaker maintains the attitude that the less her unit has to do with Wolf’s Dragoons, the better.
Since acquiring two lances of light and medium BattleMechs, Wannamaker’s Widowmakers has slowly learned to use reconnaissance to their advantage. During their most recent contract for the Taurian Concordat, these scout lances provided advance warning of an attempted flanking maneuver by pirate forces, allowing the Widowmakers to prepare for them. The unit use light and medium 'Mechs as protection of the flanks and for reconnaissance.
Forged from constant training as an OpFor for various Protectorate forces, Major Wannamaker has put together a cohesive battle force from the remnants of many shattered commands. Now a reinforced battalion, heavily equipped with advanced technology, the Widowmakers have become extremely adept at utilizing C3i systems and have managed to integrate these systems in both reconnaissance missions and the preparation and execution of deadly ambushes. Wannamaker has also been using these skills to further her prospecting operations on Outreach, looking forward to the next eighteen months of the Widowmakers’ garrison assignment.
The Widowmakers have enough technical support for the entire unit but lack sufficient DropShip assets and must hire additional transport capacity as and when needed.
- Wannamaker’s Widowmakers (1 Battalion/Green/Reliable)
- Wannamaker’s Flying Widowmakers (1 Element/Regular/Reliable)
- Wing Commander: Lieutenant Shawna White
- The Widowmakers paint their machines black, the unit's insignia is a gold spider-like mask painted over the face of their BattleMechs and the engine cowling of their AeroSpace Fighters.
- The main force are heavy and assault designs.
The first thing Wing Commander Shawna White did when the Widowmakers signed with the Word was to upgrade both of her fighters and purchase an additional four. Indeed, a large part of the reason the mercenaries are so indebted to the Blakes is because of this spending spree. The massive upgrade has definitely increased the mercenaries’ deadliness in the air, augmented by constant training— partially in punishment—that has seamlessly integrated these aerospace assets with the lighter recon elements of the ground-based Widowmakers.
- Field Manual: Mercenaries", p. 13 "Slamming the Door Closed"
- Field Manual: Mercenaries", p. 93 "Wannamaker's Widowmakers"
- Mercenary's Handbook 3055, p. 6
- Mercenaries Supplemental Update, p. 117
- Technical Readout: 3050 Upgrade, pp. 8, 96
- Starterbook: Wolf and Blake, p. 18
- Jihad Hot Spots: Terra, p. 53, "Outreach Freed"
- Starterbook: Wolf and Blake, p. 19
- Technical Readout: 3085, p. 12
- Mercenaries Supplemental, p. 64
- Mercenaries Supplemental Update, p. 117