|All of us should want Eren Yeager to lead Eldia. We want a strong leader, one who's even willing to make cold-hearted decisions.|
|— Surma openly declares his support for the Yeagerists|
Surma has dark hair which he keeps shaved close to his head, and wears glasses. He can be seen wearing the standard Training Corps uniform.
While assembling for training, Surma gets into a conversation with his fellow trainees about Keith Shadis's methods of teaching, alarming them with his staunch support of the Yeagerists's activities. Their conversation is interrupted by the arrival of the Yeagerists themselves; one of the Yeagerists named Floch informs all of the trainees assembled that they have arrived to recruit new members and arresting anyone who does not join them. Surma is among those who immediately agree to join, and although he is surprised by the Yeagerists's demands to beat Shadis to prove his loyalty, does not hesitate and goes through with it.
When Shiganshina District later falls under attack from Marleyan forces, the Anti-Marleyan Volunteers begin releasing military captives to assist in the defense of Eren Yeager. Surma attempts to halt the escaping prisoners until Jean Kirstein bluntly informs him of the danger they and Eren are in, and Surma yields as the rest of the prisoners are freed.