Lieutenant Colonel John Beichner is a native of Durham, CT and attended North Carolina State University. He graduated in December of 1999 and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in June of 2000. Later that year he attended The Basic School and completed training in the spring of 2001.
Second Lieutenant Beichner reported to NAS Pensacola for Aviation Pre-Indoctrination in June of 2001. He was then assigned to Primary Flight Training with VT-28 at NAS Corpus Christi and subsequently Advanced Jet Training with VT-21 at NAS Kingsville, TX. He was designated a Naval Aviator in June of 2003 and completed F/A-18 training with VFA-125 at NAS Lemoore, California.
In the summer of 2004 First Lieutenant Beichner reported to Marine Aircraft Group-31 at MCAS Beaufort, SC, where he joined the Checkerboards of VMFA-312 flying the F/A-18 A+. He deployed in support of the Unit Deployment Program (UDP) to Iwakuni, Japan. Within the squadron he was assigned as the Assistant Safety Officer, Avionics Officer and Quality Assurance Officer. During the tour he completed the requirements to be designated an Air Combat Tactics Instructor, Night Systems Instructor and Division Lead in the F/A-18. In preparation for his next assignment he completed the Tactical Air Control Party course conducted at EWTGLANT and was designated a ground Forward Air Controller.
In June of 2007, Captain Beichner reported to Second Reconnaissance Battalion in Camp Lejeune, NC and was assigned as the Battalion Air Officer. The battalion deployed in support of OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM 06-08.2 and conducted combat operations in the al-Anbar Province from October 2007 to April 2008.
Captain Beichner was ordered to report to MAG-31 in May of 2008 and was assigned to VMFA-312 flying the F/A-18C. He was the squadron’s Safety Officer and was selected to attend Weapons and Tactics Instructor course 1-08 at Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One, MCAS Yuma, AZ. Upon completing the WTI course Captain Beichner was assigned as the squadron’s Pilot Training Officer and tasked with preparing the squadron for a deployment aboard the USS Harry Truman with Carrier Air Wing Three. The carrier work-up was complete in the spring of 2010 and the Truman headed to sea in June. Once underway, Captain Beichner was assigned as the Assistant Aircraft Maintenance Officer and the Close Air Support Subject Matter Expert for Carrier Air Wing Three. While deployed, Air Wing Three conducted combat operations in support of OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM until December of 2010. Upon returning to MCAS Beaufort, Major Beichner was assigned as VMFA-312’s Executive Officer. He left the squadron designated as a Weapons and Tactics Instructor, Night Systems Instructor (Instructor) and Low Altitude Tactics Instructor (Instructor), MAG-31 Flight Lead Standardization Evaluator, Mission Commander and Post Maintenance Check Flight pilot.
In February of 2011 Major Beichner was assigned to the Marine Aviation Training System Site Beaufort as the MAG-31 Weapons and Tactics Instructor, Flight Lead Standardization Evaluator, NATOPS (Instructor) and Post Maintenance Check Flight pilot (Instructor). In this position he trained several candidates for WTI and TOPGUN and provided MAG-31 pilots with F/A-18 flight lead, NATOPS and Instrument evaluations.
Major Beichner left active duty in November of 2011 and started his career in the Select Marine Corps Reserves. His first SMCR assignment was as a pilot for VMFA-112 flying the F/A-18A++. While he was with the squadron he was assigned as the Pilot Training Officer and participated in Mojave Viper during the summer of 2012. In the spring of 2013, Major Beichner and his family moved to Connecticut and he joined 1st Battalion, 25th Marines in Fort Devens, MA as the battalion Air Officer. The battalion participated in Integrated Training Exercise 4-14, African Lion 2015, and Nordic Frost 2016. His next assignment was as the Air Officer for the 25th Marine Regiment in Fort Devens, MA. In this role he participated in Northern Strike 2016, COC Exercise Ethan Allen 2017, COC Exercise Fort Devens 2018 and Enduring Fire 19-01.
Lieutenant Colonel Beichner’s personal decorations include the Air Medal with Strike/Flight bronze numeral 2, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with “V”, gold star in lieu of second award and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with gold star in lieu of third award. He has 2000 hours of military flight time and 150 carrier arrestments.