|This article is about the Novel Character. You may be looking for Road To Survival counterpart. For other pages with the same name, see: Gene|
- "HEY! I ASKED YOU A QUESTION, DETROIT! WHERE THE FUCK DO YOU THINK YOU'RE GOING! YOU SIT YOUR BLACK ASS BACK DOWN RIGHT NOW OR I WILL BLOW YOU AWAY!"
- —Gene to Detroit.[src]
Gene Gavin, also known as "the Major", is a main character and an antagonist first encountered in The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor. Claiming to be from a nearby US Army National Guard post with full regalia, several other Guardsmen, and heavy munitions to provide a convincing background, Gavin saw himself the best suited leader in a "martial law" environment and takes de-facto leadership of Woodbury before Brian Blake. He is described as "a gung-ho former marine with a flattop haircut and icy blue eyes". He wears an "olive drab jacket buttoned up with a bullet bandolier across his chest". He served as the primary antagonist of Rise of the Governor.
Camp Ellenwood, Georgia
Before the apocalypse, Gene Gavin served as a Major in the Georgia National Guard, as well as a survival instructor with the 221st Military Intelligence Battalion at Camp Ellenwood. Gene took pleasure in tormenting the Guardsmen under his command on overnight bivouacs up to Scull Shoals by shitting in their duffels and giving them the rubber hose treatment for the smallest infractions. It is stated that Trey Barker was his star pupil at Camp Ellenwood. He was friends with Barker and Manning, who would later become his bodyguards.
A couple of weeks before Philip, Brian and Nick arrive in Woodbury, Gavin and six other members of the National Guard, including Trey Barker, Manning, Stinson, Tommy Zorn, Johnson and Greely wondered into the town from a nearby Guard Station and started pushing people around. With Manning and Barker as his bodyguards and enforcers, Gavin holds dirt races in the Woodbury Veteran's Speedway for entertainment and steals money and supplies from helpless families, as well as taking advantage of women behind the racetrack. Gavin and his subordinates don't appear to have a good understanding of the tactical requirements for safety from the infected, with the races directly luring more biters to the perimeter.
Over the course of Brian's first week in Woodbury, he quickly pegs Gavin as a sociopath with designs on power and plunder and keeps his distance. Around five O'clock one night, Brian hears the distant sound of vehicles and cheers coming from the North side of town at the racetrack. He goes to check it out and finds a gap in the fence to climb through when a voice calls out for him to stop. Gavin and two of his men approach Brian with assault rifles pinned up against their shoulders patrol-style. Gavin tells Brian that the admission is forty dollars or the equivalent in trade. When Brian doesn't have any money they ask for chicken or Penthouse magazines before telling him to have a nice day. Brian asks who gets the money which catches the attention of the Guardsmen. Gavin gets nose-to-nose with Brian and tells him it's for the Commons and improvements to the town. Brian stands up for himself and asks if the three of them keep the money. The Major pulls a .45 semiauto from his belt holster, thumbs off the safety, and presses the barrel against Brian’s temple. He orders him to open his mouth and puts the gun barrel between Brian's teeth. He pulls it out and tells the newcomer to go back to where he came from before he gets hurt.
After the death of Philip, Nick, and Ms. Bridges, the thirty of the townsfolk gather in the courthouse and discuss the increased number of biters in the area after they found the bodies of the recently deceased. Gavin stands at the front of the room with Barker and Manning behind him. The Major relishes the opportunity to finally make his stand as the leader of the town after biding his time for weeks. Gavin decides he needs respect in order to lead, and in order to be respected, he needs to be feared. An old man brings up how the racetrack is attracting more dead to the area and putting them in danger to which Gavin unholsters his gun and threatens the elderly resident. Martínez rises from his chair and tries to calm everybody down but is met with the same threat to shut up. He returns to the front of the room and announces to the town that there's going to be new rules set in place because too many residents aren't pulling their own weight. Dr. Stevens asks the Major what it is he wants with everyone to which Gavin bellows for their obedience. He realizes assuming control over these citizens isn't going to be as easy as he thought.
Near the front of the room by the window, Detroit mumbles something under his breath which Gavin hears. He asks the mechanic to repeat himself and Detroit gets up to leave but Gavin reaches for his gun. Detroit involuntarily reaches for his holstered revolver but the Major out draws him and orders him to sit back down by gunpoint. Eventually Detroit gets up again and begins to leave, ignoring the Major's orders to sit back down. Gavin pulls his sidearm and shoots Detroit in the back of the head where he lands next to Brian at the back of the room. Immediately, three separate townspeople dart toward the exit. Gavin orders Barker and Manning to go after them and bring in anybody else still hanging around outside. With everybody's attention, Gavin walks back to the front of the room and drones on about how he'll make an example of any residents who want to put everyone's lives in danger by breaking the system, and how the times they're living in were prophesized in the Bible and may very well be the end-times.
As he paces the front of the room next to portraits of Woodbury's forefathers and handing out new rules and orders, Brian goes through an out of body experience wondering how his brother would handle the situation. Brian gets within fifteen feet of Gavin while drawing his .38 from his belt without him noticing. As soon as the Major realizes and looks up, Brian raises the muzzle and empties the entire cylinder of hollow-point Glaser Safety Slugs into the general vicinity of his face. The townspeople jerk in their seats at the noise but nobody screams as Major Gavin’s remains sit slumped against the front wall with his face and neck riddled with bullet holes. One man get up and kneels by Gavin’s body, but he doesn’t bother feeling for a pulse or looking too closely.
- Killed By
During a town hall meeting, Gavin tries to assume control of the town through fear and prevents anybody from leaving the room. Suddenly Brian wonders what his brother would do in this situation and takes four steps towards Gavin without him noticing. As soon as Gavin realizes, Brian empties his entire .38 cylinder into the general vicinity of his face, killing him.
This list shows the people Gene has killed.
- Gavin is one of the few Novel Series characters to make an appearance in The Walking Dead: Road to Survival. Others being Nick Parsons, Joshua Hamilton, Trey Barker, Jeremiah Garlitz, Chen Wenzhu, Elena Anderson, Ying Hengyen, Wangfa, Guo, Lǎopó and Jiafeng.