At some point during his career, the CIA Black Ops operative Sgt. Michael Shaw was dispatched to Cuba and assigned to Operation 40, where he likely participated in the Bay of Pigs Invasion during Op-40's attempted assassination of Fidel Castro. Along with Alex Mason, Shaw was captured by the Cuban Military but, unlike Mason, he managed to escape his captors before presumably being taken to Vorkuta. After using a radio to make contact with the CIA and the Extraction Team, he made his way along the coast to the beach where he was extracted via a stolen Hind by the Black Ops team sent in to rescue him and Mason.
He was then attached to the SOG and deployed in Vietnam where he met up with a defector named Yuri Raslov, and Captain Patterson, that had helped rescue him years earlier. After coming up empty on the search for Nova-6, the trio managed to catch the last chopper out of Vietnam.
After this, he was again sent in with Raslov and Patterson to retrieve intel from a Soviet Intelligence Base, and later to destroy a Russian
Lab producing a chemical weapon. Shaw was deployed into a secret Russian Submarine Base, with only a Mk. 22 Mod. 0. He managed to plant charges on the Submarine stationed there and then escaped before the charges detonated, single-handedly destroying the submarine and the base.
Shaw holds the Knife in a slightly different position respect to all other playable characters. His right hand is tended more forward and his left hand is held nearer to the body, whereas all other characters hold the Knife with the arms at the same level.
He is the third character to speak in the Call of Duty' games for DS, the first being Bravo Nine, the second being Dimarkurato.