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Rear Admiral John D. Saccomando

Rear Adm. John Saccomando is a native of Buffalo, New York. He graduated from the Georgia Institute of Technology with honors and was commissioned in September 1994 via NROTC. He attended the Joint Combined Warfare Hybrid School and completed executive education programs at Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and with the Dale Carnegie Institute.

Saccomando's first served in Fighter Squadron (VF) 213 "Blacklions" where he completed two extended combat deployments in the F-14D on USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), flying more than 50 combat strikes in support of Operations Southern Watch and Enduring Freedom. In 2002, he returned to VF-101 as a F-14 flight instructor and demonstration pilot, flying over 40 airshows and performing in front of more than five million spectators.

Saccomando was then selected to join the Blue Angels in 2003 as the right wing (#2) of the storied Blue Angel Diamond. While publicly representing the Navy and Marine Corps, he accumulated 1,000 hours in the F/A-18 Hornet flying airshows in over 72 cities in front of 20 million spectators.

In 2006, he transitioned to the F/A-18F with Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 41 “Black Aces” where he completed two extended combat deployments on USS Chester Nimitz (CVN 68) flying strikes in support of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom. He achieved numerous “Top Eleven Ball Flyer” awards, including the Airwing’s “Top Hook” award. He was also selected as VFA-41’s 2007 Pilot of the Year.  Saccomando transitioned to the Navy Reserve in 2008 and flew the C-37B with the VR-1 Starlifters at Joint Base Andrews.

In 2012, Saccomando reported to the VR-56 Globemasters for his first command tour. Under his command, VR-56 received the 2014 Battle “E” and was also awarded the coveted 2014 CNAFR Squadron of the Year. Subsequent command tours include Training Airwing One Reserve Component Commander, NATO Allied Command Transformation detachment DC, Chief of Naval Forces Europe/Africa MPP det 413, and Commander, Naval Installations Command, Navy Emergency Preparedness Liaison Officer (NEPLO) Program Commander.

Saccomando’s decorations include Legion of Merit (two awards), Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), Air Medal (six awards and one Combat Distinguishing Device), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (five awards and one Combat Distinguishing Device), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (two awards), and various personal and unit awards. He has accumulated more than 5,000 Navy flight hours and has 579 carrier arrested landings.

Last Updated: 11 October 2022


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