Lieutenant General John E. Rhodes last served on active duty as Commanding General, Marine Corps Combat Development Command, Quantico, Virginia.
General Rhodes graduated from San Jose State University in 1966 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business and Industrial Management and earned a Graduate Degree from the University of Southern California in 1973. In February 1967, he attended Officer Candidate School (OCS). Following OCS, he reported to the Naval Training Command for basic flight training. Upon completion, he moved to the West Coast where he received replacement aircrew training in the CH-46.
In December 1968, he transferred to the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing and was assigned to HML-367, Phu Bai, Republic of Vietnam. Following WestPac, he was transferred to the 3d Marine Aircraft Wing where he requalified in the Ch-46 and served in both administrative and maintenance billets. During August 1972, he reported to Marine Barracks, Washington DC, where he served initially with the Marine Corps Institute and later as Executive Officer, Headquarters and Service Company. Following his tour in Washington DC, he returned overseas to the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing and participated in Operations Eagle Pull and Frequent Wind.
Returning to California in 1976, he reported to the 3d Marine Aircraft Wing where he served in various group and squadron billets. In 1978, he attended the Marine Corps Command and Staff College at Quantico, Virginia. Upon completion, he was assigned to Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps where he served in the Aviation Monitor Section. After Headquarters, he returned to the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing on Okinawa where he served as the Commanding Officer, Marine Air Base Squadron 36.
During July 1983, General Rhodes as reassigned to the 3d Marine Aircraft Wing where he served as the Commanding Officer, HMM-163. In 1986, General Rhodes attended the Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania and following the Army War College he completed tours with the 1st Marine Division and the 5th Marine Expeditionary Brigade. In July 1989, General Rhodes assumed command of the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable). During June 1990, the MEU deployed to the Western Pacific and then to the Arabian Gulf in support of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.
Following Desert Strom, he returned to Washington DC, where he served as the Senior Military Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of Defense. In July, 1993, he assumed duties as Deputy Commander, Marine Corps Forces Atlantic, Norfolk, Virginia. From Norfolk, General Rhodes moved to North Carolina where he commanded the 2d Marine Aircraft Wing for two years. In July, 1996, he reported to the Marine Corps Combat Development Command, where he served as the Deputy Commanding General.
General Rhodes has been qualified in both rotary wing and fixed wing aircraft and has flown over 1,000 combat hours and missions. His personal decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star Medal with gold star, Legion of Merit with Combat "V", Distinguished Flying Cross with three gold stars, Purple Heart, Strike/Flight Air Medal and number 45, three single mission Air Medals and Combat "V", and the Combat Action Ribbon.