Captain John A. Sipes

Capt. John A. Sipes

ARIZONA CITY — U.S. Navy Capt. John A. Sipes retired in May after 37 years of service, and his parents, Lois and Jerry Sipes of Arizona City, attended the retirement ceremony in Norfolk, Virginia.

Jerry Sipes, a retired Navy lieutenant commander, spoke at the retirement celebration.

“Jerry was honored to speak at John’s retirement ceremony,” Lois said.

Lois and Jerry Sipes have lived in Arizona City for 27 years.

John Sipes enlisted in the Navy in December 1984 and served aboard the USS Marvin Shields.

He was selected for the officer training program in 1987. In 1992 he graduated from the University of San Diego with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics. He became a naval aviator in March 1994.

Sipes served two deployments aboard the USS Guam and later transferred to serve as a fleet replacement instructor pilot. Throughout his tenure with the Navy he also served as a safety officer, training safety administration maintenance officer as well as the officer-in-charge of Detachment 1 in Naples, Italy.

He earned a joint post military education master’s degree in national security and strategic studies and served as an executive officer beginning in August 2008.

He later went on to serve as the air boss aboard the USS Iwo Jima from April 2010 to March 2012. He became the director of aviation training at Afloat Training Group in Norfolk in April of 2012 and served in that capacity for three years. He then became the director of aviation safety programs at the Naval Safety Center, then was promoted to deputy commander and later STRATCOM desk officer of the Joint Exercise Division in July 2018.

Among his awards are the Legion of Merit, Air Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with two Gold Stars, the Navy Commendation Medal with two Gold Stars, the Navy Achievement Medal with two Gold Stars and various unit and campaign awards.


Melissa St. Aude is the Arts & Entertainment editor at PinalCentral. She can be reached at