Flamma, a Syrian soldier who had been captured and sentenced to death in the arena, fought as a secutor -- using a sword and shield and armor plating on one arm. He had one of the longest and most successful careers of any gladiator ever. His success earned his freedom four times over, but he had grown to love the thrill of the arena and chose to stay a gladiator. At the peak of his fame, Flamma's face was even featured on a Roman coin.
In total, Flamma fought in 34 fights (21 wins, 9 draws, and 4 losses) before finally losing his life in the Colosseum at age 30.