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Walking Dead Wiki
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I'll tell you what my skipper told me. He said, "Do what needs doing." That means making the tough calls no one wants to make, no matter what's going on around you. Or back on land.
―Renwick giving advice to Riley[src]

Renwick (first name unknown) is a character and a former antagonist in AMC's Fear the Walking Dead and Dead in the Water. He is the Commanding Officer on the USS Pennsylvania.


Renwick is a stoic, level-headed, and persevering man who is set on carrying out orders. He greatly cares for his men and acts a mentor figure for Riley who wants to become a captain one day. He tells Riley that he needs to be ready to make the tough calls. However, he is shown to go to great lengths to follow orders. After the outbreak, when given orders to fire a missile at Chicago to potentially save the world, he is shown to be willing to do so despite this action killing tons of people. This conflicts with Riley, Pierce, and McGuire who are not willing to fire on their own country. Renwick becomes frustrated at this and threatens the three of being court martialed if they do not obey. Before his death, Renwick shows remorse and expresses hope that the three men are right in not launching the nuke.


Location Unknown[]

Nothing is known about Renwick's life prior to or as the outbreak began, except that he was a captain in the U.S. Navy and the commanding officer of the USS Pennsylvania.


Dead in the Water[]

"Something Bad"[]

Captain Renwick enters Riley's room who assures him that his crew ran the drill twice that morning and their previous failure won't happen again. Renwick bring up them discussing the week before Riley going into the next leg of XO training and running a ship of his own which is what Riley wants more than anything. However, Renwick is concerned based on Riley's performance the day before. Riley reminds Renwick of himself at Riley's age, coming up the ranks with a new family back home. Renwick offers Riley the same advice that his own skipper had given him: "do what needs doing. That means making the tough calls no wants to make no matter what's going on around you or back on land." Looking at Oliver's ultrasound which Riley puts into his pocket, Renwick asks if Riley had gotten distracted the day before thinking about his family. Riley admits that he's never thought of himself as much of a family man and he's not sure if he's cut out for it. However, Renwick tells Riley that he'll get over it when he sees Oliver smiling up at him and Renwick offers Riley some advice as a father with his own children.

Riley zips up his jacket to cover the sub's launch keys and Renwick tells him to speak freely. Riley wonders why they're running drills with Friedman laid up and no word from command. Renwick states that when an order comes down, they won't be sitting around drinking hot cocoa and he needs to know that when the time comes, Riley will turn the key and Riley promises that he will without hesitation.

Their conversation is interrupted by Bacon with the news that Friedman has taken a turn for the worse and they still have had no word from the medevac. Although Renwick orders Bacon to keep trying, Bacon states that there's no time and they're prepping the mess hall now. Riley points out that Park's never done an appendectomy before and Bacon tells him that Park says he's reading up on it. Although they have no other choice, Renwick is disgusted, pointing out that they're operating in a time of peace in the Gulf of Mexico.

Riley, Renwick, and Bacon make their way to the mess hall where they watch the operation on Friedman. Looking at the three, Park grimly shakes his head at them. Friedman wakes up as the Fentanyl wears off and stares at his cut open abdomen before going into shock and flatlining. Despite Park and his assistant's best efforts, Friedman dies.

"A Good Sailor"[]

Later Renwick enters the cafeteria where the crewmembers are having ice cream. He gives a eulogy to Friedman, saying he was a good sailor and a proud father and that his sacrifice can not go in vain. Just then a zombified Friedman attacks Cook and bites Bacon and Park. Renwick tries to shoot Friedman, but doesn't go for headshots. Renwick gets pinned to a wall by Friedman until he is saved by Riley who shoots Friedman in the head. He tells Park to get patched up and tend to the others. Renwick, Riley, and Pierce look at Friedman's corpse, questioning what happened.


After the outbreak in the sub, Renwick manages to survive. At of the end of the hall, Renwick and Pierce run into Riley and McGuire who happily greet each other. Renwick calls back to his previous conversation with Riley saying, "Told you it wouldn't be hot cocoa." The four enter the weapons room. In the room, Renwick points his gun at Riley, Pierce, and McGuire, telling them to show their arms to see if they were bitten. No one is shown to be bitten much to Renwick's relief. Renwick remorsefully says that he's already had to kill six of his men. The four men realize that they now have their answer as to why they were taken off of the NATO run and the medevac wasn't sent for Friedman with Renwick sadly noting that the world must be in chaos. Renwick believes that the Pennsylvania must be all that's left, but Pierce and McGuire aren't convinced. Renwick states that they have plans in place for this sort of thing and Riley suggests that for all they know, the missile they've been ordered to fire could stop it. Renwick agrees with Riley and tells Pierce and McGuire that firing the missile is all that matters now. A new message comes through which Riley, McGuire and, reluctantly, Pierce agree is authentic. The launch coordinates print out and after reading them, Renwick tells his men that the target is Chicago and he orders them to prepare to launch.

"We Have Orders"[]

As Renwick orders him to prepare to launch, Riley hesitates, pointing out that they would be firing on their own country. However, Renwick is sure that command wouldn't have sent the coordinates if they didn't have a good reason. Pierce reminds Riley of his earlier suggestion that this will stop it somehow and Renwick tells him that they have an incredible responsibility and while it's not an enviable task, it must be done. Riley reminds Renwick that firing nuclear weapons at their own people has never been done before, but Renwick is uninterested. Riley suggests that someone might've gone rogue, but Renwick dismisses it as impossible and he believes that whatever's happening on the Pennsylvania is probably happening in Chicago too and their nukes can stop it.

Removing his launch key, Renwick prepares to follow through with their orders while Riley continues arguing against wiping out an entire city. Renwick tells Riley that there's a chain of command and that Riley is at the bottom of it. Inserting his key, Renwick orders Riley to take out his own launch key, but after a moment of hesitation, Riley flat-out refuses. Riley tells Renwick that he joined the Navy to protect their country, not to destroy it. While Riley swore an oath, it wasn't to do something like this even though they all knew that this day could come.

Renwick suddenly descends into a coughing fit before insisting that if Riley wants to keep his family safe, this is how he does it. However, Riley reveals that he will be killing them instead as his wife and son are in Chicago. Renwick states that they are more than likely already dead, but Riley refuses to believe it. Renwick reminds Riley that that very morning, Riley had told him that he didn't even want to be a father, but Riley tells him "that doesn't mean I'm not gonna die trying to protect him." While Renwick is worried about his family too, he believes that their country is at stake and counting on them and he refuses to relent. Riley puts his key around his neck and under his shirt, refusing to turn the key.

Grabbing his gun, Renwick states that it takes two men to launch a missile, but Riley doesn't have to be one of them. Renwick orders Pierce to take the key from Riley, but Pierce joins him, as does McGuire. Renwick calls their actions mutiny and threatens to have them all court martialed, but McGuire states that their orders are comparable to Nuremburg and Riley tells him that Renwick's superior orders are cruel and war crimes.

Renwick suddenly collapses to his knees and Riley rushes to help him, discovering that the captain has been bitten on the arm. Knowing that he's doomed, Renwick asks Riley to tell everyone that he went down with the ship and Riley nods in agreement and apologizes. The two men share one last joke about hot cocoa before Riley takes Renwick's gun. Renwick expresses hope that the three are right about not launching the nuke and Riley promises to do what needs doing. As Pierce looks away, Riley mercy kills the dying Renwick with a headshot.

Season 7[]

"Six Hours"[]

Morgan Jones has started wearing Renwick's uniform.


Killed By

After being exposed of having been bit by an unnamed crewmember, Riley shoots him in the head out of mercy so he doesn't turn into a walker.

Killed Victims[]

This list shows the victims Renwick has killed:

  • Possibly many enemy combatants (Pre-Apocalypse)
  • 6 unnamed USS Pennsylvania crew members (Zombified)




The following is a list of some of Renwick's most memorable quotes.

Dead in the Water

"Last week, we discussed you going into XO training next leg. Running a ship of your own. That's what you want, isn't it? (…) Well, based on your performance yesterday, frankly, I'm concerned. (…) You remind me of myself at your age, coming up the ranks, new family back home. (…) I'll tell you what my skipper told me. He said, "Do what needs doing." That means making the tough calls no one wants to make, no matter what's going on around you. Or back on land."
- Renwick to Riley about him climbing up the ranks, "Something Bad"

"Is that him? Your son? Hey, what happened yesterday-- you get distracted thinking about them? (…) It's important to have someone back home waiting for you. Helps you remember what we do it for. (…) You'll feel different once he's smiling up at you. Simplest things, like a dangling key, magic. When they're little, they just love you. They don't know any better."
- Renwick asking Riley about his newborn son, "Something Bad"

"If an order comes down, it won't be when we're sitting around drinking hot cocoa. We have to be ready, even if we're on our back foot. I need to know when I give the order, when I give the order, you'll turn that key. You'll do what needs doing."
- Renwick to Riley about doing what needs to be done., "Something Bad"

"Where's that medevac? (…) Well, keep trying them damn it! (…) Reading up?! We're not the sea dragon in enemy waters. It's peacetime in the Gulf of goddamn Mexico!"
- Renwick to Bacon after finding out there is no medevac coming, "Something Bad"

"Where's that medevac? (…) Well, keep trying them damn it! (…) Reading up?! We're not the sea dragon in enemy waters. It's peacetime in the Gulf of goddamn Mexico!"
- Renwick to Bacon after finding out there is no medevac coming, "Something Bad"

"Friedman was a good sailor and a proud father. He made the ultimate sacrifice for our country, which is all the more reason we can't let up on our mission. Not for a second. That dolphin on your chest represents your fortitude to keep calm and do what needs doing under any circumstances, even the death of one of your own. It's what you signed up for. I can think of no greatest honor-"
- Renwick's eulogy to Friedman, "A Good Sailor"

"Told you it would't be hot cocoa."
- Renwick to Riley, referencing their previous conversation, "Incoming"

"I already killed six of my own men."
- Renwick to Riley, Pierce, and McGuire about who he's killed, "Incoming"

"The world must be in chaos. We're all that's left."
- Renwick to Riley, Pierce, and McGuire, "Incoming"

"Chicago. That's the target. Prepare to launch. Did you hear me, Lieutenant? I said prepare to launch. (…) What did I say about questioning orders? Command wouldn't have sent these coordinates if they didn't have a damn good reason. (…) We have an incredible responsibility. It's an unenviable task, but what one we must do. (…) Whatever's happening on this boat is probably happening in Chicago, and these missiles can stop it. We have orders, and, by God, we're gonna follow them."
- Renwick to the group after receiving word to launch the missiles, "We Have Orders"

"Who do you think you are? There's a chain of command, son, and you're at the bottom of it. Get that key out. That's an order. (…) You swore an oath. (…) We knew this day could come and-- (coughs) You want to keep your family safe? This is how we do it. (…) More than likely, they're already dead. I think you know that. (…) This morning you told me you didn't even want to be a father. (…) You think I'm not worried about my family? Of course I am. But our country's at stake. Our country's counting on us."
- Renwick as Riley refuses to follow orders, "We Have Orders"

"This is mutiny. I'll have you all court-martialed for this."
- Renwick after Riley, Pierce, and McGuire refuse to fire the nuke, "We Have Orders"

"Tell them I went down with the ship. Hot cocoa, right? I hope you boys are right about this. What are you gonna do?"
- Renwick's last words to Riley before he is put down, "We Have Orders"


Episodes 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
Torn Apart
Cold Storage
The Oath
Flight 462
Red Machete
The Althea Tapes
Dead in the Water
Appears Voice is heard
👁 Appears with no lines Appears in a flashback
Appears as a walker 🖼 Appears in a photograph/video
Appears as a corpse Appears in a hallucination/dream


  • Renwick is one of the highest-ranking named military personnel on the show.
  • Starting with "Six Hours", Morgan is shown to be wearing Renwick's uniform.