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Before the Zombie outbreak, Cletus Samson was the owner of the Huntin' Shack at the North Plaza in Willamette Mall. Born and raised a "hillbilly" to his core- Cletus developed a passion for drinking and shotguns, both of which he carries over to his business in the Shack. Always a cynical with trust issues, after the zombie outbreak, Cletus snapped in a paranoid rage, refusing to trust anyone believing they could be zombies.
When Frank West arrived at the store, he and a fellow survivor James Ramsey attempted to enlist Cletus in the fight against the horde. Cletus drew his shotgun, and threatened them, but Ramsey walked into the store, trying to reach a compromise. Cletus pulled the trigger, and James was blown through the doors of the Huntin' Shack. Shouting that he didn't trust anyone he turned on Frank.
The two had an intense gunfight, but Frank managed to get the upperhand on Cletus, taking advantage of his compulsive need to drink some of his beer every few shots. Bleeding and defeated, a desperate Cletus tried to run out of his store, where he was stopped by a newly zombified James Ramsey. The zombie wrestled Cletus to the ground, biting him multiple times, resulting in the gun store owner's death- while Frank watched on in horror and disgust.
With Cletus dead, Frank had free reign on the gun store's wares for the next two days, having access to an near infinite supply of shotguns, sniper rifles, handguns and machine guns. On the third day of his time in Willemete, Frank encountered three other survivors in the store. Unlike Cletus, these three were willing to travel with Frank, but only if he had a picture of the vent leading to the security room to prove it existed. If he couldn't prove the safe room was real they would attack Frank and force him to kill the group.