With a new season of Star Wars Rebels coming and the days slowly counting down until the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars fans are growing increasingly excited for what lies ahead. For fans who are members of the 501st and Rebel Legions, or their comrades in the Mandalorian Mercs and other fan organizations, the anticipation is just as great, leading to endless discussions of the all-new adventures and worlds waiting to be encountered in that galaxy far, far away.
But even as we continue to watch the calendar (and clocks!) count down, fandom continues to grow year round, and every opportunity to come together is another day of fun and sharing in Star Wars love. For the United States, no greater event exists on the west coast than San Diego Comic-Con, where fans from all over the world converge to share their passion.
As always, members of the Legions and other fan groups were in full force, surprising fellow members and fans alike with new costume creations and discussing the “trooping” they’ve done for their Star Wars communities in the past year.
This year, no greater testament to dedication could be found than in the strength and fortitude of 501st Legion member, Kevin Doyle, who undertook a journey of over 600 miles from the Star Wars memorabilia museum Rancho Obi-Wan in Petaluma, California down to San Diego in memory of his wife Eileen.
As it turns out, Star Wars fans are an increasingly active group, and Kevin was not the only super fan to go for some Imperial-themed outdoors work. Actor and major Star Wars fan, Misha Collins, called upon a few members of the 501st to provide him with an escort as he made his way around the convention center for his morning run. All in a day’s work for stormtroopers sharing in their love of Star Wars.
For fan group members, each year at Comic-Con features the traditional Droid Hunt, group dinners, group photos, and opportunities to dress up and hit the floor in any number of outfits to bring Star Wars to life. But this year, members also had an opportunity to relish anticipation for what’s coming in the ever-growing Star Wars universe, attend the special Star Wars panel and surprise after-concert, and just enjoy being fans.
Even as Comic-Con wound down and everyone packed up to return to their homes and support their communities, plans were made to reunite again as soon as possible, with all eyes locked on target for December 2015 to discover what happened next “a long time ago…”
Photograph of Misha Collins supplied by 501st Legion Member Christi Ladnier.
Lawrence Green wanted to be a stormtrooper or Luke Skywalker when he first saw Star Wars. Now he’s both, as a member of the 501st and Rebel Legions. Designated by 501st founder Albin Johnson at the 2007 Rose Parade as “the 501st’s own Jedi Luke,” Lawrence is the executive officer & public/media relations officer of the 501st Legion’s Southern California Garrison. You can follow his personal tweets at @Lawrence_Green and find the SoCal Garrison at www.southerncaliforniagarrison.com and @501SCG.