John B. Hayes

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For other people named John Hayes, see John Hayes (disambiguation).
John B. Hayes
ADM J B Hayes USCG.jpg
Born (1924-08-30)30 August 1924
Jamestown, New York, U.S.
Died 17 January 2001(2001-01-17) (aged 76)
Florida Keys, Florida, U.S.
Buried at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington County, Virginia, U.S.
Allegiance  United States of America
Service/branch United States Coast Guard
Years of service 1946–1982
Rank US CG 10 shoulderboard.svg Admiral
Commands held Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard
Commander of the 17th Coast Guard District
Awards Coast Guard Distinguished Service Medal
Legion of Merit
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Joint Service Commendation Medal
Coast Guard Commendation Medal

John Briggs Hayes (August 30, 1924 – January 17, 2001) was a United States Coast Guard admiral who served as the 16th Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard from 1978 to 1982.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Hayes was born in Jamestown, New York and grew up in Bradford, Pennsylvania. Hayes graduated from the United States Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut in 1946, although Academy records list him in the Class of 1947. His first command assignment was at the LORAN Transmitting Station in Matsumae, Hokkaidō, Japan. After a series of Coast Guard cutter command assignments, he attended the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island. Upon his graduation, he was stationed in Washington, D.C., where he graduated from George Washington University, earning an M.A. in international affairs.


From 1966 to 1968, Hayes assumed a command post, stationed in Vietnam, during the war. Returning to Washington, he was promoted to captain and assigned to the U.S. Coast Guard's Office of Boating Safety, followed by his service as Commandant of Cadets at the Coast Guard Academy. From 1975 until his appointment as Coast Guard Commandant, he served as Commander of the Juneau, Alaska-based 17th Coast Guard District.

Under Hayes' leadership, the Coast Guard accomplished a number of firsts for women in the military, including the assignment of Lieutenant (junior grade) Beverly Kelley as the first female commanding officer of a U.S. military vessel, and Lieutenant Kay Hartzell as the first female to command an isolated U.S. military unit.[2]

Dates of rank[edit]

Ensign Lieutenant, Junior Grade Lieutenant Lieutenant Commander Commander Captain
O-1 O-2 O-3 O-4 O-5 O-6
US CG O1 insignia.svg US CG O2 insignia.svg US CG O3 insignia.svg US CG O4 insignia.svg US CG O5 insignia.svg US CG O6 insignia.svg
June 5, 1946 September 15, 1948 October 29, 1951 July 1, 1958 July 1, 1964 October 1, 1968
Commodore Rear Admiral Vice Admiral Admiral
O-7 O-8 O-9 O-10
US CG O7 insignia.svg US CG O8 insignia.svg US CG O9 insignia.svg US CG O10 insignia.svg
Never held August 1, 1973 Never held June 1, 1978

Later life and death[edit]

Following his retirement from the Coast Guard, Hayes moved to Boothbay, Maine. He died while vacationing in the Florida Keys after being struck by a car at the age of 76. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.[3]

Personal life[edit]

Hayes was an Eagle Scout and a recipient of the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award.[4]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Military offices
Preceded by
Owen W. Siler
Commandant of the Coast Guard
Succeeded by
James S. Gracey