Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle





Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The death of Naylon Haddock has all the elements of a big screen fantasy, yet it illustrates some timeless human frailties. 

As March turns into April we will today explore one of the most controversial killings in modern times. This gruesome crime touches on the sticky subjects of corporate greed, combat veterans emotionally damaged by their service, and the unprecedented effectiveness of modern military technology.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Naylon Haddock clawed his way to the top. Along the way, he also sold his soul.   

Naylon Haddock was a complicated man. The second wealthiest human on the planet at the time of his death, Haddock’s life was inextricably entwined with the company he ran. As CEO of the Weyland-Yutani Conglomerate, Naylon Haddock wielded the kind of power normally reserved for elected heads of state.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The Weyland-Yutani Corporation remains one of the most powerful and influential corporate entities in human history.

Weyland-Yutani evolved from the previous Weyland Corporation. The original creation of Sir Peter Weyland, the Weyland Corporation became fabulously successful in producing innovative clean energy solutions for a world struggling with climate change and runaway pollution. While the Weyland Corporation was instrumental in moving the planet toward sustainable energy, the conglomerate that it spawned delved into much darker things.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Naylon Haddock made his billions through the exploitation of radical emerging bioweapons technology.

Naylon Haddock was instrumental in diversifying the Weyland-Yutani Conglomerate into the exploding field of bioweapons. Tapping into a previously unexplored market space, Weyland-Yutani’s unprecedented innovation in the field made Haddock unimaginably wealthy. Along the way, it also made him some dangerous enemies.

The Shooter

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Dwayne Hicks was a decorated combat Marine whose military service ultimately took him over the edge.    

Corporal Dwayne Hicks was a squad leader in a small Special Operations-Capable Marine Expeditionary Detachment and a veteran of two previous combat tours. By all accounts an exceptional Marine, Corporal Hicks was awarded the Bronze Star for Valor on his second combat deployment.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Dwayne Hicks was the product of a traditional American nuclear family.   

Dwayne grew up in Middle America the second son of blue-collar parents Edwin and Mallory Hicks. Like many young men destined for military service, he chafed at the monotony of school.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Young Dwayne Hicks enlisted in the Marine Corps to find travel and adventure.    

Hicks enlisted in the Marine Corps the day after his high school graduation.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Like many injured combat veterans, Corporal Hicks struggled to find purpose in a disorganized civilian world after the military.

Hicks’ third major combat operation remains shrouded in controversy. Corporal Hicks and two civilians were the only survivors of what was originally to be a routine search and rescue mission. The details of the operation remain classified to this day, though rumors abound regarding personal involvement by Naylon Haddock and his Weyland-Yutani Corporation.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Ellen Ripley was one of two civilian survivors of Corporal Hicks’ final combat operation.

After Hicks’ return from his final ill-fated op, he was involuntarily medically retired. He was in and out of VA medical facilities for two years being treated for both his physical injuries as well as PTSD. His few acquaintances within the VA system described him as distant and isolated in the months leading up to the shooting.

The Killing

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Corporal Hicks approached the pursuit of Naylon Haddock like a military operation.

A combat unit is not unlike a dysfunctional but tight-knit family. When Corporal Hicks lost his tribe he sought retribution. In the months leading up to the attack, he stalked Naylon Haddock both online and in person. Hicks was once arrested at the corporate headquarters of the Weyland-Yutani Conglomerate and subsequently earned the attention of Law Enforcement. However, if hating the likes of Naylon Haddock were a prosecutable offense then much of the world would be incarcerated.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Naylon Haddock invested quite a lot of effort and money in his personal security.

Haddock, for all his undeniable gifts, was also diagnosably paranoid. His estate was equipped with state of the art surveillance, an armored safe room, ballistically resistant construction, and polycarbonate windows. However, as Corporal Hicks used an issue milspec M41A pulse rifle in the shooting, all of Haddock’s preparations were rendered ineffective.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Naylon Haddock’s predictability made him vulnerable.

Haddock lived alone on his palatial estate but followed a predictable schedule. In the afternoon he would frequently dismiss his staff and retire to his living room overlooking the sea. Hicks surveilled the man long enough to appreciate his routine and, on the afternoon in question, approached the estate via the ocean.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Corporal Hicks chose his firing point well to give him an unobscured view of his target.

Hicks’ firing position was carefully selected and placed him with a direct line of sight to the expansive bay windows behind which Haddock typically took his afternoon brandy. The established range from Corporal Hicks’ hide to his target was 273 meters, a simple shot for a man of Corporal Hicks’ skillsets armed with state of the art military firepower. The spring day was overcast, and Haddock was, by all accounts, caught totally unawares.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The aftermath of Hicks’ attack on Naylon Haddock’s home, made detailed forensic assessment a challenge.

Hicks’ Pulse Rifle was equipped with a detachable gyro-stabilized electronic sighting unit that automatically compensated for range, parallax, and spindrift. Thusly equipped the maximum effective range of the M41A is published as 1,200 meters. Forensic evaluation of the crime scene indicates that Hicks’ first round was likely the kill shot. The fact that the ex-Marine followed his initial burst with four high explosive grenades made definitive assessment difficult. The devastating extent of Naylon Haddock’s injuries stands in testament to the remarkable effectiveness of modern military small arms.

The Weapon

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The M41A Pulse Rifle is a state of the art Infantry combat tool. This is a photograph of the actual weapon used in the Haddock assassination.

The standard-issue M41A Pulse Rifle that Corporal Dwayne Hicks used in the assassination was digitally inventoried to his unit arms room and had previously been declared a combat loss on the MTOE (Modified Table of Organization and Equipment). Investigators later surmised that Hicks smuggled the weapon and its ammunition back into the country among his personal gear. As he was injured at the time and processed through the border control system as an urgent medical casualty his personal effects were not subjected to the typical scrutiny. Prosecutors used this fact to establish both his mindset toward Haddock and the extent of his premeditation.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Armat Battle Systems is a respected military contractor.

The M41A Pulse Rifle is the product of Armat Battle Systems and has seen front line service with both Army and Marine forces for more than a decade. The M41A was originally developed as the result of the Marine 70 Program, a Corps-wide restructuring of small arms intended to replace the then-issue Harrington Assault Rifle. The Harrington rifle’s manifest shortcomings have been explored in great detail in other venues. The fact that the Army also selected the M41A as its standard Infantry weapon speaks to its many sterling attributes.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The original design of the M41A was inspired by a Weyland-Yutani weapon.

In an ironic turn of fate, the M41A incorporated several advanced features from the Weyland Storm Rifle, a private venture of the Weyland-Yutani Conglomerate. In so doing, this killing provides the only example with which I am aware wherein the target of the assassination was killed with a weapon he or she was at least indirectly responsible for developing.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The M41A is a sealed design that includes a handy digital ammunition counter on the side to help the operator keep track of rounds remaining.

The M41A is a radical design consisting of a titanium aluminide outer casing along with extensive use of temperature resistant polymers for its internal components. The chassis is fully sealed against dirt and moisture, and its microelectronics are hardened to resist EMP. The weapon weighs 3.2 kg empty and 4.9 kg with a fully loaded 99-round magazine and four 30mm grenade launcher rounds.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The M41A Pulse rifle employs a novel electrical firing sequence that offers a tunable trigger pull and unprecedented reliability.  

Unlike its predecessor the Harrington Rifle, the M41A uses an electronic pulse action ignition system, hence the name. The onboard rechargeable Lithium battery is good for at least 10,000 rounds, and the weapon’s shipboard storage racks recharge the batteries automatically.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The M41A Pulse Rifle was designed with grunt input throughout.

The M41A is a gas-operated weapon that incorporates a rotating locked breech and hydraulic recoil dampener within a carbon fiber jacket. The fire selector offers safe, semi, four-round burst, and full auto functions. The cyclic rate on full auto is 900 rounds per minute. The cyclic rate on four-round burst is 2,000 rounds per minute. This was the mode Hicks used in the Haddock assassination. The weapon is designed to fire all four rounds before the recoil impulse is transmitted to the firer, allowing exceptional accuracy.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The 10x24mm caseless ammunition the M41A Pulse Rifle fires has a rectangular cross-section.

The rifle’s explosive-tipped caseless light armor-piercing ammunition is as radical as the weapon itself. The standard issue M309 10x24mm round pushes a 210-grain steel jacketed high explosive projectile to 2,500 feet per second. The bullet is embedded within a rectangular block of Nitramine 50 propellant. The consumable primer leaves no firing residue.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The Pulse Rifle’s caseless ammunition was looked upon with skepticism early in its operational career. It is a proven commodity nowadays.

An Armat engineer carried one of these rounds in her pocket alongside her keys and phone for a full year during the development process before loading the cartridge into a test weapon and firing it. The round still produced accuracy and velocity data that were within military specs. The stellar performance of this system in combat has dispelled any concerns there might have been concerning durability or reliability.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

The U1 under-barrel grenade launcher component of the M41A system offers unparalleled firepower.

One of the most popular features of the M41A is the U1 30mm over-and-under pump action grenade launcher. This lightweight removable device offers individual soldiers and Marines a significant close to medium range indirect fire capability. The 30x71mm M40 HEDP (High Explosive Dual Purpose) grenades can also be manually armed and thrown in the manner of a conventional hand grenade. The M40 HEDP warhead will penetrate 75mm of rolled homogenous steel at a 90-degree angle of incidence and offers a ten-meter bursting radius in which the operator can expect a fifty percent casualty rate.


Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Many have lionized Dwayne Hicks as a folk hero.

Corporal Dwayne Hicks surrendered to authorities immediately after the shooting and remains incarcerated in the ADX Florence Supermax Prison in Florence, Colorado. Hicks spends his days in solitary confinement as his case works its way through the courts. Corporal Hicks maintains a robust group of organized supporters. An online petition demanding his release garnered more than a quarter million digital signatures.

Tragedy, Revenge, and the M41A Pulse Rifle

Many see Naylon Haddock as a Dracula-like figure who simply reaped the reward his life choices demanded.

In the gory death of Naylon Haddock, we see personified the ultimate manifestation of greed, rage, and revenge. Haddock was an undeniably evil man, even his closest associates would describe him thus, while the triggerman Hicks could yet still be painted a hero. One of the most remarkable aspects of this sordid tale, however, is that it all unfolded on a dingy spring afternoon, the first day of April.

The remarkable capability of the M41A Pulse rifle system blurs the lines between fantasy and reality. That its might was employed on April 1st to kill the reviled CEO of the Weyland-Yutani Corporation smacks of Wagnerian opera.


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  • Mark Wynn March 28, 2022, 11:50 pm

    As this story contains all the technical arms verbage found in both my gun magazines and sci-fi anthologies … after reading I had to have a cigarette.

  • Ejharb April 8, 2019, 6:06 pm

    I was gonna go with,”just what you see,pal.” Wrong movie

  • KE4GAF April 6, 2019, 3:53 pm


  • Blu April 4, 2019, 2:20 am

    When pictures was of the alien cast, started wondering why would they use actors that’s well known? Didn’t think about April fool joke. Good one, buddy.

  • D April 2, 2019, 5:21 pm

    Lets just take off and nuke the site from orbit…only way to be sure.

  • CPL Brian Smith USMC April 2, 2019, 2:25 pm

    I can not help but believe that if I were still serving with that unit, I could have made a difference. It would not have been my first “bug hunt” in any case. I will never forget CPL Hicks and my fallen brothers and sisters.
    Semper Fi

  • joe Gatewood April 2, 2019, 8:08 am

    Good April Fool. Didn’t snap to it until a couple hours later. Thought Sigourney Weaver looked familiar.

  • Joe Ernst Jr April 2, 2019, 6:19 am

    Half-way through the read I hit the floor. I have a lot of enemies out there.

  • Steve Eisenberg April 1, 2019, 9:34 pm

    I started getting suspicious when I realized the guy’s name was “Haddock.”

  • T. J. Hom April 1, 2019, 9:33 pm

    You got me! You had me dead to rights, up until the picture of Sigourney Weaver. Thought I was pretty up to date on weapon platforms. You even had me trying to Google this weapon. LOL! Great story Dr. Will Dabbs! Thoroughly enjoyed it!

    If you ever finish that book one of the other fellas was talking about, sign me up for an autographed copy.

  • Mike LCDR USN Ret April 1, 2019, 8:13 pm

    Sigourney is still hot!

  • Jay April 1, 2019, 7:22 pm

    Laughing until I saw the photo of the Caneiro house on fire.

  • Michael Christensen April 1, 2019, 7:03 pm

    Great April Fools joke, and people actually think it is real.

  • Louis Ferro April 1, 2019, 6:26 pm

    I’m Buyin a few for the kids to play with….Oh and Grandma too !!

  • David Durden April 1, 2019, 4:56 pm

    Bravo sir . . . bravo . . . this made my morning.

  • Sam Vanderburg April 1, 2019, 3:18 pm

    The day is coming! The new 6.8 being developed is similar!

  • Manny April 1, 2019, 3:17 pm

    I clicked the link but could not find one for sale on GunsAmerica. What’s the waiting period looking like, for these NFA items nowadays?

  • DaveH April 1, 2019, 2:40 pm

    OMG, this ranks right up there with Orson Welles “War Of The Worlds” radio Halloween broadcast prank! Really great story, Will Dabbs!

    • Beachhawk April 2, 2019, 7:25 am

      Happy April’s Fool Day, Dr. Dabbs. BTW: Warrant Officer Ellen Ripley has been a hero of mine since she took out the Alien.

  • Harley April 1, 2019, 2:21 pm

    What’s next; the mass shooting reported at Nakatomi Plaza of reports of rouge LA cops shooting South African Diplomats?

  • Jeff April 1, 2019, 2:07 pm

    Great story from fellow Mississippian and Ole Miss grad.

  • AJ April 1, 2019, 1:59 pm

    BAN ALL PULSE WEAPONS!! These weapons of war have no place on the streets. This is an AR41A7 ghost gun that can shoot 30 155mm howitzer clips in half a second. It’s also scary and can be equipped with an optional device that makes shot quieter than a mouse fart in a crowded room. Our government needs to confiscate them all so they can be sold to less fortunate minority cartels and drug gangs.

  • Mark Wynn April 1, 2019, 1:31 pm

    I’m duty-bound to report this is fake news.

    We all know Ripley and an Alien organism were the only survivors of the Colonial Marine spaceship Sulaco’s escape pod’s crash on a planet housing a penal colony populated by violent male inmates. Cpl. Hicks died when his hibernation pod cracked. Duh!

    (However, am impressed with Will Dabbs bio, which I assume is factual.)

  • nate chung April 1, 2019, 12:23 pm

    Aliens was one of the nest movies of all time. It was so bad A$$ watching the marines blowing those aliens away. Watching the sentry rounds count going down. Hollywood doesn’t know how to make good movies anymore. They only know how to shove politics down our throats.

  • Don Moore April 1, 2019, 11:41 am

    Game Over Man Game Over.

  • Jim April 1, 2019, 11:19 am

    Great April Fools Story by a man I truly admire, Dr. Will Dabbs.

  • Eric Holder April 1, 2019, 10:56 am

    Packing up some phase plasma rifles in the 40 watt range to ship to my friends south.

  • Rick Goulette April 1, 2019, 10:54 am

    Hook line and sinker…. I didn’t know until I tried searching for Haddock and Hicks and only came up with Alien stuff. Great 4/1 story.

  • Pat April 1, 2019, 10:46 am

    I would like to know where I might acquire one of those April 1st generation pulse rifles? I have a few dark ops jobs I need to finish up!!!😎

  • mikeb April 1, 2019, 10:43 am

    What? It’s gotta be true. I read it on the net.

  • Bill Ferry April 1, 2019, 10:42 am

    The Weyland-Yutani corporate name kept tugging at some buried memory, but the M41A pulse rifle flipped the light switch on.

    Hilarious and very well done!

  • LocoMike April 1, 2019, 10:30 am

    My initial 15 second tin foil observation was, Wow, Mandela Effect again! I’m a Space Shuttle Discovery disaster date victim. But then, the Hollywood pics ruined my rush lol. More humor is needed in these times.
    Good and refreshing prank as I’ve seen. Hope to return the favor some day!

  • Bones4442 April 1, 2019, 10:10 am

    The director’s cut of “Aliens” still stands as one of the greatest sci-fi flicks of all time. I remember being completely blown out of my socks in 1986 that the writing and effects were so spot on. Cameron and Gale Anne Hurd really sold it with their obsessive attention to detail and refusal to settle for schlock. I saw it 6 times then, countless times since and still bought the blu-ray. The M 41A and the powerloaders are still viable concepts to this day. Inspired idea for April fools. Kudos!

  • Bobs your uncle April 1, 2019, 10:03 am

    Sure, right, blame the young veteran, or blame the weapon, NO! I blame the corporation that wanted to bring in more undocumented illegal aliens

  • Bob April 1, 2019, 9:24 am

    Right out of a James Bond movie and some of Q’s tactical gadgets. Great story to start the day.


    • Anthony Klytta April 1, 2019, 2:28 pm

      I met Hicks in basic. He was the squad prankster, but could get serious in a hurry. You could tell, even then, that he was destined for something big. How big, nobody knew. Until that fateful night. After his last deployment, he changed. Many people want to blame the PTSD; I don’t buy it. Hicks know who the deep state assholes were, and I believe Haddock was number one on the list. Will there be more? Anythings possible.

  • Pat Brister April 1, 2019, 9:13 am

    I smelled a “rat” early on, especially aware of today’s date, but I thought, “what the hell, why not?” Enjoyed it. Carry on…

  • Robert April 1, 2019, 8:50 am

    Loved the article! I knew what it was the minute I saw Pulse and Weyland. I’m just glad we completely ignored Aliens 3 as if it never happened.

  • Paul Goldstein April 1, 2019, 8:26 am

    I doubledog dare ya to pull these shenanigans next 04/01!!

    As a big Ridley Scott fan, I thought something strange was goin’ on when I read about W-Y Corp.
    But you fooled me good initially.

    Covers off to Dr. Dabbs…a wonderful piece of tongue-in-cheek fantasy writing.
    And I oughta know…arch, like my feet used to be, and dry like a decent Gibson.

    Thanks, Doctor.

  • Gary Heaton April 1, 2019, 8:17 am

    Great should finish that book you have been working on, for how long has it been?? Almost ten years now, or more? Should be good if you ever finish it.
    Give my best to the family, and keep your butt out of the choppers and on the ground where you belong Dr.!!

  • Steve in Detroit April 1, 2019, 7:48 am

    Where is their kid Newt? I heard she is up to some stuff now.

  • Dep April 1, 2019, 7:26 am

    Well, skepticism creeped in when I read the word ‘pulse’ but I busted ya when I saw the picture of Sigourney Weaver. Pretty woman, but the underbite makes my bull dog envious. Nice job. Btw, some retired baseball guy named Sid Finch called while I was reading.

  • Douglas Riding April 1, 2019, 6:37 am

    You ‘Sons-a-Bitches’ !!! You sucked me right in !!! I was a little bit skeptical about the ‘pulse rifle’ at first, but I thought it might have been some prototype or small business-build using a famous name…

    I also thought it strange that I hadn’t ever heard of Naylon Haddock, or Weyland… But I read on – and on…

    But when I came upon ‘Ripley’s’ picture, parts of me started to pucker, and I KNEW I had been slipped the green weenie !!!

    Like I said; ‘ You Son’s-a-Bitches ‘ !!! ;-P

  • Mark R April 1, 2019, 6:06 am

    Bravo. I was reading this before my morning cup of coffee and thinking to myself this sounds vaguely familiar…

  • Griff Nelson April 1, 2019, 5:59 am

    Thank you. I got a kick out of that April Fool’s Day story. I had a grin through most of it, and even chuckled a couple of times.

  • chad delong April 1, 2019, 5:20 am

    Brilliant! you had me right up to Weyland-Yutani. i love the background story. Mr. Scott should be proud of this detailing of the events that followed. now as long as we can keep our 2nd in place, this could be our rifle of choice in the near future. although i would expect a few derivatives between the M4 and the M41A pulse rifle. something along the lines of the AA-12 chassis. hint hint.

  • CANMACH2 April 1, 2019, 4:55 am

    “Stay frosty people!”

  • Kevin McCloskey Sr April 1, 2019, 4:30 am

    Corporal Hicks real name is Michael Biehn the first movie he played in was “Terminator” he played Kyle Reese how was sent to the past to stop the “Terminator” played by Arnold Schwarzenegger. Ellen Ripley was played by Sigourney Weaver in the second “Aliens” movie with Biehn. the gun is from the 2nd Aliens movie.
    Hope I didn’t spoil your April 1 joke. Really good story though.

    • Griff Nelson April 1, 2019, 6:09 am

      Wrong! Terminator was NOT his first film. it wasn’t even the first which had both he and Bill Paxton in the cast.

  • Frederick Dale April 1, 2019, 4:22 am

    April Fools! But when available I want the civilian edition!

  • Tyler April 1, 2019, 4:14 am

    Lmao! Happy April Fools! The Alien movies were great, fantastic reference. Please write more articles like this one.

  • Kent Nordland March 31, 2019, 7:49 pm

    “Where the Hell do you put the bayonet?”, Chesty Puller at a flame thrower demonstration.

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