Little has been revealed about Shrapnel’s past. At one time he was a normal human named Mark Scheffer, and at some point he was transformed into the creature he is today. For his first professional case as a hitman, Shrapnel was hired to go to Kansas City to kill Walter Williamson; a man from his past. Shrapnel attempted to stay incognito, but failed miserably after deciding to slaughter anyone who caught a glimpse of him. Within hours there was a citywide manhunt for the unusual killer.
Batman: The Brave and the Bold
This version of shrapnel is originally General Kafka, a Russian war criminal who was turned into an organic metal being through a lab accident. As Shrapnel, he continuously fights OMAC in a destructive battle arranged by Equinox. Shrapnel is driven by revenge. He claims to hail from a poor Russian village that was razed and burnt to the ground during an unspecified conflict (apparently as collateral damage in failed attempt of the GPA to curb Kafka's power base), dooming its farmer inhabitants (or better the survived ones) to poverty and famine. In this precarious state of mind, Shrapnel is exploited by Equinox coaxed into trying to set up a meltdown to burn New York City into a nuclear holocaust as a balance for the earlier loss of his people. He was defeated by OMAC and Batman.