John Magnon was born on August 25, 1929, in New Orleans, Louisiana. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy on August 31, 1946, and completed basic training at NTC Great Lakes, Illinois, in November 1946. S2 Magnon then attended Aviation Electronics School at NTTC Corpus Christi, Texas, and then at NATTC Memphis, Tennessee, from December 1946 to March 1948. His first assignment was as an Aviation Technician and Radar Operator aboard PBM Mariner patrol aircraft with Medium Sea Squadron 8 (VPMS-8) at Port of Spain, Trinidad, from April 1948 until he left active duty with the U.S. Navy on August 30, 1948, and during this time he served a temporary assignment aboard the seaplane tender USS Timbalier (AVP-54). AT2 Magnon received an honorable discharge from the U.S. Naval Reserve on May 30, 1953. After leaving active duty, John worked in the radio and television service business for 8 years before joining IBM as a computer technician, retiring from IBM as a Senior Engineering Manager in 1988. He was also a Private and Commercial Pilot, and is a member of The American Legion, The Navy League of the United States, the Association of Naval Aviation, and the Mariner/Marlin Association. John and his wife Lois have two children together; Sandra Spulecki and Craig Magnon (1953-2011).
His Letter of Commendation reads:
Subject named man reported aboard this vessel for temporary additional duty in connection with seaplane tender operations 1 to 11 August 1948. His services were required in radar operation (Navigation) in that no radar rating was attached during that period. It is my desire to commend MAGNON for his outstanding performance of duty and for a job "well done". Throughout the cruising portion of the period mentioned above he maintained a highly efficient radar watch or was on call continuously. He maintained the radar equipment in an excellent condition and through his technical skill obtained its maximum performance.