- "The true humanitarian in the Merlyn family was my wife Rebecca. Many of you here knew her. She tirelessly devoted herself to helping those less fortunate in the Glades. I like to think that if the men who murdered her knew her, knew the work that she did, knew the person that she was... he would have helped her to her car, made sure she was safe, instead of stealing her purse and shooting her. The truth is, I haven't done enough for this city. My city. I failed it. But I promise you—I am not finished yet. I promise you that this city will be better for all of us. And on that day, I will look at this beautiful award and feel that I have earned it. I thank you."
- —Malcolm Merlyn[src]
Rebecca Merlyn (died 1993) was a wealthy philanthropist in Star City whose main goal in life was to help the less fortunate residing in The Glades. She was the wife of the late Malcolm Merlyn and mother of Tommy Merlyn, as well as an old friend of the Queen family. Rebecca's murder served as the catalyst for the Undertaking.
Rebecca was born to a wealthy family in Starling City. At some point, she became close family friends with Robert and Moira Queen. In adulthood, Rebecca became a philanthropist and worked to help better the poverty-stricken district of Starling City known as The Glades. She started up a free clinic in the area to provide healthcare to its denizens.
One day while visiting Robert and Moira at Queen Consolidated, Rebecca met Malcolm Merlyn, a new businessman in the city, and the two quickly struck up a conversation. Malcolm inquired about her work and Rebecca told him about her free clinic. Intrigued, he asked Rebecca out to lunch, which she accepted.
In 1993, Rebecca was murdered on her way home from her clinic in a mugging, when Danny Brickwell shot her as she pleaded for her life and stole her purse. As she laid dying in plain view, Rebecca implored the aid of people passing by, who ignored her pleas. Using the mobile telephone she had on her, Rebecca dialed her husband's phone number, leaving him messages in which she begged for his help; a preoccupied Malcolm refused to respond to his telephone's ringing, something he would later deeply regret. Following Rebecca's passing, Malcolm withdrew from his life at home and grew distant from his young boy, an action that strained their father-son relationship as Tommy developed into manhood. Malcolm was given a photo of the man that was a suspect in her murder and set out to find him and kill him. However, killing him didn't ease Malcolm's mind. Rebecca's clinic was eventually closed by Malcolm as he stated he could not bear to see it leveled with the rest of the Glades.
In early 2015, Team Arrow discovered Danny Brickwell had killed Rebecca Merlyn and that Malcolm killed the wrong man. Malcolm went after Brick and confronted him, and Brick admitted to killing Rebecca as an initiation to join his first street gang. Merlyn intended to use the gun that Brick used to kill Rebecca on him, but Oliver Queen managed to talk him down from it.
In an alternate reality created by the Legion of Doom using the Spear of Destiny, Rebecca, along with her son, Tommy, is still alive. It was implied that she was also Thea's mother in this reality.
Rebecca's death is what caused her husband Malcolm Merlyn to become the ruthless, cold-hearted psychopath he is today, as well as the fact that her murder served as the catalyst for the Undertaking. Rebecca's death is also one of the main reasons why her son Tommy, had an extremely strained relationship with Malcolm and did not get along with his father at all.
Rebecca's clinic was eventually closed by Malcolm as he stated he could not bear to see it leveled with the rest of the Glades; it is unknown if the clinic was destroyed in the Undertaking, as it is unknown if it was located in the east or the west sector of the Glades. It is currently unknown if the clinic was reopened.
DC's Legends of Tomorrow
Arrow: The Dark Archer
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