Was born in Gilead to Steven and Gabrielle Deschain. Because of his bloodline he is destined to become one of the next generations of gunslingers, and is trained in that capacity. Roland becomes a gunslinger at the age of fourteen, coerced into his test of manhood by Marten, his father’s wizard. Roland defeats his teacher, Cort, with an unusual weapon: his hawk, David. David is just the first in a long line of sacrifices Roland makes in his quest for The Dark Tower. He inherits his father’s apprentice guns as a sign of his rite of passage.
Roland is the youngest ever to become a gunslinger. His father had previously been the youngest, having passed his test at the age of sixteen.