The special devices implanted in Commander Steel's joints give him a variety of super-human abilities. These include:
ENHANCED STRENGTH:ENHANCED ENDURANCE:
Commander Steel's artificial lung and heart allow him to use all his physical abilities to an extent beyond human norms, as reflected in his Endurance ranking.
Biochemistry * Marksmanship (Rifle) * Martial Arts B
The All-Star Squadron * Winston Churchill * Franklin Roosevelt * Professor Gilbert Giles
A talented college biology student working with the noted Dr. Gilbert Giles to develop a special bioretardant formula, Hank Haywood joined the Marines when Hitler invaded Poland in 1939.
Defending his military base against saboteurs several months later, Hank was caught in an explosion that left him more dead than alive. Realizing he had no other hope to survive, Hank offered himself as a guinea pig to test Dr. Giles' bioretardant process. Giles argued the technique was too risky, but eventually Hank prevailed.
Over the next several weeks Hank underwent a series of painful operations as Giles rebuilt him from the skeleton up, using steel alloy tubing to replace the pulped bone in Hank's arms, legs, and rib cage, then adding a metal casing to protect Hank's skull, and micro-motors to his joints to move all that steel. An artificial lung replaced Hank's ruined one, and backup devices aided his damaged heart. Finally, and most painfully, the bioretardant was used to induce skin regrowth over the burned areas, covering Hank with a new form of flesh.
After recovering from the operations, Hank found he was now far stronger and swifter, with skin that was for all intents indestructible. Designing an armor-mesh costume to match his new powers, Hank became Steel, the Indestructible Man, and for the next several months battled the Nazi menace in America and abroad.
Dropped behind enemy lines early in 1940 as part of a plan to kidnap Adolph Hitler, Steel was himself captured instead and imprisoned in a concentration camp commanded by the man who would become Baron Blitzkrieg. Brainwashed to assassinate Winston Churchill, Steel was returned to England, where he was freed from his compulsion by members of the heroic All-Star Squadron.
Rechristened Commander Steel by President Roosevelt himself, Hank served with the All-Stars for several months before finally returning behind enemy lines in search of the prisoner-of-war husband of Hank Haywood's ex-fiancee. As of this writing, the details of Commander Steel's exploits between 1941 and the present have not been officially recorded.