Before Ice StationEdit
Through unknown circumstances, Jose Cruz joined the United States Marine Corps, where he gained the call-sign Santa Cruz.
Santa Cruz was among the second sub-team to arrive at Wilkes Ice Station, after being a part of Book's team investigating a crashed hovercraft. During the battle against the French Paratroopers he fought primarily on A-deck with Montana. When the battle began drawing to a close, he, Montana and Snake helped force the remaining French forces into a trap.
Once the battle was over, Cruz was ordered by Schofield to search the station for erasing devices, and instead only located a portable VLF tranmitter. When Schofield decided to send a team down to the cavern, Santa Cruz was chosen along with Montana, Fox and Sarah Hensleigh to investigate the apparent alien spacecraft below.
After diving down, Cruz was intrigued by the mysterious ship, and when the group was deciding whether or not they should try to open it, Santa Cruz decided that he wanted to see if they could get inside in case he died later. He helped lay out plans for the ship after they discovered it was the lost prototype for a stealth fighter, and tried to crack the entry code with Hensleigh. As he noted the bizzareness of the whole situation to Montana, Montana killed him by thrusting a knife through his ear, directly into Cruz's brain, killing him instantly.