John Shannon
Official portrait, 1989
United States Secretary of the Army
In office
January 20, 1993 – August 26, 1993
PresidentBill Clinton
Preceded byMichael P. W. Stone
Succeeded byGordon R. Sullivan (Acting)
United States Under Secretary of the Army
In office
August 14, 1989 – November 23, 1993
PresidentGeorge H. W. Bush
Preceded byMichael P. W. Stone
Succeeded byJoe R. Reeder
Personal details
Born(1933-09-13)September 13, 1933
Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
DiedMarch 17, 2017(2017-03-17) (aged 83)
Clinton, Maryland, U.S.
EducationCentral State University (BS)
Shippensburg University (MS)
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/service United States Army
Rank Colonel

John William Shannon Sr.[1] (September 13, 1933 – March 17, 2017) was United States Under Secretary of the Army from 1989 to 1993.[2]


Shannon was born in Louisville, Kentucky, on September 13, 1933. He was educated at Central State College, graduating in 1955 with a B.S. in industrial education.[3]

After college, Shannon was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Infantry of the United States Army. In the Army, he served as a commander and staff officer. During the Vietnam War, he served two tours of duty in South Vietnam as a military advisor and battalion commander. From 1972 to 1974, he served as a congressional liaison officer in the Office of the Secretary of the Army. He received an M.S. in public administration[3] from Shippensburg State College in 1975. He retired from the United States Army in 1978, having attained the rank of colonel.

Upon leaving the Army, Shannon became Special Assistant for Manpower, Reserve Affairs and Logistics to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Legislative Affairs. From June 1981 to December 1984, he was Deputy Under Secretary of the Army.

In 1984, President of the United States Ronald Reagan nominated Shannon as Assistant Secretary of the Army (Installations and Logistics) and he subsequently held this office from December 7, 1984, to 13 August 1989.

In 1989, President George H. W. Bush nominated Shannon as United States Under Secretary of the Army and he subsequently held this office from August 14, 1989, until November 23, 1993.[4] He was Acting United States Secretary of the Army from January 20, 1993, until August 26, 1993. On that date, Shannon was arrested outside the Ft. Myer post exchange in Arlington, Va. after store detectives saw him put items worth about $30 into a shopping bag and leave the store without paying. Shannon was placed on administrative leave, and never returned to his position.[5]

The charges against Shannon were dismissed after he agreed to attend a shoplifting prevention program and perform community service. He was subsequently hired as a month-to-month contracted consultant by the Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Logistics to study inventories and advise the military on which parts and supplies to keep on hand in what quantities.[6] He completed his study and ended his contract in early 1994.[7]

Shannon later operated his own firm, Shannon Consulting Services.[8]

After his death at Southern Maryland Hospital, Shannon was interred along with his wife Jean R. (Miller) Shannon[9] (June 17, 1933 – March 16, 2017)[10] at Arlington National Cemetery on September 28, 2017.[11]


  1. ^ U.S. Army Register: Active and Retired List. Vol. I. Washington, D.C.: Department of the Army. January 1, 1966. p. 510. Retrieved 2021-10-20.
  2. ^ Associated Press Archived 2013-05-31 at the Wayback Machine, Shoplift Charge for Secretary of Army, August 28, 1993
  3. ^ a b Nomination of John W. Shannon to be Assistant Secretary of the Army (Installations and Logistics). Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office. 1985. p. 2. Retrieved June 3, 2021.
  4. ^ "Archived Biography from the Department of the Army". Archived from the original on January 18, 2004. Retrieved 2017-04-26.((cite web)): CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  5. ^ Los Angeles Times Article dated September 22, 1993
  6. ^ N.Y. Times News Service Archived 2013-06-12 at the Wayback Machine, Army Secretary Is Rehired After Arrest For Shoplifting, December 9, 1993
  7. ^ New York Times, Official in Shoplifting Case To End Duties for Pentagon, January 22, 1994
  8. ^ Rocks of the Year for 1987, The Rocks, Inc., accessed June 2, 2012
  9. ^ "John Shannon Sr". The Washington Post. March 28, 2017. Retrieved June 3, 2021.
  10. ^ "Shannon, Jean M". ANCExplorer. U.S. Army. Retrieved June 3, 2021.
  11. ^ "Shannon, John William". ANCExplorer. U.S. Army. Retrieved June 3, 2021.
Government offices Preceded byMichael P. W. Stone United States Under Secretary of the Army 1983–1993 Succeeded byJoe R. Reeder United States Secretary of the ArmyActing 1993 Succeeded byGordon R. SullivanActing