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John J. "Jack" Sheehan
Born August 23, 1940 (1940-08-23) (age 69)
Sheehan JohnJ USMC.jpg
Place of birth Somerville, Massachusetts
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Marine Corps
Years of service 1962-1997
Rank General
Commands held Supreme Allied Commander, NATO
Commander-in-Chief U.S. Atlantic Command
Awards Defense Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Star
Defense Superior Service Medal
Silver Star (2)
Purple Heart (2)
Other work Bechtel International, Sr. VP
U.S. State Dept. Defense Policy Board

General John J. "Jack" Sheehan (born 1940) is a retired United States Marine Corps general. His final active duty commands, culminating 35 years of service in the Marine Corps, were as the Supreme Allied Commander Atlantic (SACLANT) for NATO and as Commander-in-Chief for the U.S. Atlantic Command (CINCUSACOM) (1994–1997).



General Sheehan was born on August 23, 1940, in Somerville, Massachusetts. The son of Irish immigrants he is one of seven children. He graduated with a B.A. degree in English from Boston College in June 1962. After graduation, he was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps. He holds an M.S. degree from Georgetown University in Government. His professional military education includes the Amphibious Warfare School, Naval Command and Staff College, and National War College.

He served in various command positions ranging from company commander to brigade commander in both the Atlantic and Pacific theater of operations. General Sheehan’s combat tours include duty in Vietnam and Desert Shield/Desert Storm.

His staff positions included duties as regimental, division, and service headquarters staff officer as well as joint duty with the United States Army, the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and the U.S. Atlantic Command.

Prior to assuming his final duties as Supreme Allied Commander, Atlantic and Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Command on October 31, 1994, General Sheehan served as Director for Operations, J-3, Joint Staff, Washington, D.C. General Sheehan retired from the Marine Corps on September 24, 1997.

In 1998, Sheehan joined Bechtel International as a Senior Vice President.

In 2010 he testified to the US Congress that the Dutch told him that the fall of Sebrenica was related to the Dutch allowing openly gay men to serve in the military together with unionization and a decision to take a peace dividend because the Soviet threat was gone. During the same testimony, Sheehan claimed that sexual attraction between servicemembers of the same sex would have a negative impact on readiness, while attraction between men and women in gender-integrated units would not.[1][2]


His decorations and medals include:

Bronze oak leaf cluster
Gold star
Gold star
Bronze star
Silver star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Silver star
Silver star
1st Row Defense Distinguished Service Medal w/ 1 oak leaf cluster
2nd Row Silver Star Defense Superior Service Medal Bronze Star w/ 1 award star & valor device Purple Heart w/ 1 award star
3rd Row Defense Meritorious Service Medal Meritorious Service Medal Army Commendation Medal Navy & Marine Corps Achievement Medal
4th Row Combat Action Ribbon Navy Presidential Unit Citation Navy Unit Commendation Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal
5th Row National Defense Service Medal w/ 1 service star Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal Vietnam Service Medal w/ 5 service stars Southwest Asia Service Medal w/ 2 service stars
6th Row Humanitarian Service Medal Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon Arctic Service Ribbon Vietnam Gallantry Cross w/ 2 silver stars
7th Row Vietnam Armed Forces Honor Medal Vietnam Gallantry Cross unit citation Vietnam Campaign Medal Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia)

See also


 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Marine Corps.
  1. ^ Sheehan: Gays weakened European militaries
  2. ^ Retired U.S. general links gays in army to genocide


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