Overachiever finds yet one more way to overachieve

| April 24, 2023

Lieutenant Commander Jonny Kim, MD, USNR, former Navy SEAL

I talked about Silver Star recipient Jonny Kim a while back in a Valor Friday piece. Since then the man who enlisted into the Navy, became a SEAL, was decorated for valor in action, was commissioned an officer, became a medical doctor (from Harvard no less), and then became an astronaut has squeezed another extremely hard achievement-of-a-lifetime into his resume.

I ended my VF piece on Kim by saying, “He’s only 37, so he’s got a couple more decades to work in some other amazing career choice.” Well, he’s now 39 and has just received his wings of gold as a US Naval Aviator. Yup, he’s taken up flying helicopters. This guy is living like three of my childhood dreams. I feel so inadequate.

Task and Purpose has the story;

Navy SEAL doctor astronaut Jonny Kim somehow finds time to become naval aviator

U.S. Navy SEAL. Harvard Medical School-trained physician. Astronaut. These are all things on Lt. Cmdr. Jonny Kim’s already extensive list of accomplishments. Now Kim can add naval aviator to that list.

Kim completed his advanced helicopter training on March 24, pinning on his wings at Naval Air Station Whiting in Corpus Christi, Texas, according to a Navy press release published this week

“NASA really values helicopter pilots for their perspectives and crew resource management mentality,” Kim said in the release, adding that astronauts in the Apollo space program also completed helicopter aviation training due to the similarities with lunar landing procedures.

“Space flight is closely related to aviation, and proper crew resource management allocates human resources to accomplish the mission safely and effectively. By virtue of the helicopter cockpit environment, helicopter pilots bring an abundance of CRM to the spaceflight table,” he said.

To complete the aviation training, Kim completed both solo and night flights.

“The NVG [night vision goggle] training in the advanced syllabus for helicopters was amazing, especially because I have a lot of ground experience as a SEAL using night vision … but I didn’t have the experience of integrating a cockpit-NVG scan with degraded visual environments … That was really challenging and formative in my growth as an aviator,” said Kim.

Kim’s graduation from flight school – he was, naturally, on the so-called “Commodore’s List” of distinguished graduates – likely makes him one of few people in the ranks of the U.S. military who are both qualified naval flight surgeons and pilots.

More at the source.

Category: Bravo Zulu, NASA, Navy

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He needs to slow down and switch to a diet of beer and cupcakes He’s making the rest of us look bad. 😀


The thing that always impressed me most about this guy was that he grew up in the worst of a circumstances and never made excuses. He just went out and did life. The garbage ideas of our victim based society says that he should not exist, but he does.

jeff LPH 3 63-66

Lets all just grin and beer it after reading the post. I can beer it, And a BZ to the man.

USMC Steve





Not wearing his cape- must be at the dry cleaners.

jeff LPH 3 63-66

He really cleaned up at the dry cleaners on all those achievments.


Astronaut first, then aviator? Sounds backwards to me but, damn, who am I to criticize? I do like the Trident patch on his NASA jumpsuit. So, this is someone who can shoot a high-value target, medevac said HVT to the hospital, and save their life? Talk about one-stop shopping.


Not quite the way it sounds. He’s completed the astronaut training program, which anyone can do as a scientist or mission specialist. In his case it’s medical, not necessarily to fly the spacecraft.

Later in the article it does say they intend for him to pilot unmanned craft in space, specifically the lunar lander, so getting his Naval Aviator qual in helos makes sense.

This is just the next step in his training. Later on he’ll earn his Naval Astronaut pin after his first space mission.




Lt Commander Kim’s very real military resume sounds like some posers fevered wet dream.

Army-Air Force Guy

Great story, but you shouldn’t have posted it. You’re giving future SV types too many ideas 😄.


Dude. Chill!  😄 

Seriously, he must have a lot of fun learning how to do cool stuff. I hope the works as hard being a husband and father (if he is married)


Wonder when he found time to have marital relations?

My superpower of “sleeping in late” is defeated by my arch nemesis “gotta pee”!

BZ, Good Sir…Much Respect…SALUTE!  :saluting: 


Rocket man.
Sneaky SEAL.
Medical practice.


It is possible to do a lot and be a good husband and father, but you have to work as hard (or harder) at it as you do at achieving other things.


NAS Whiting is north of Milton, Florida, near Pensacola.
Task and Purpose should have caught that.



Source story, with excellent technical, operational, and organizational details,
and a nice group shot photo.



Task and Purpose edited their story, and ran a correction…

[Correction: 4/24/2023; a previous version of this article incorrectly stated that Naval Air Station Whiting Field was located in Corpus Christi, Texas.
It is located in Milton, Florida.
A previous version of this article also omitted that Lt. Cmdr. Jonny Kim is part of the Navy’s Aeromedical Dual Designator Program. ]

Last edited 1 year ago by MarineDad61
Green Thumb

Bass ass. Keep it up.


Heck yeah!


I feel so inadequate.

No kidding. As I look around the fabric covered box I work in, I am thinking, “Well, you’ve done mediocre for yourself.”

Last edited 1 year ago by FuzeVT

Not me, I’m a firmly 75th percentile guy.

President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neande

I feel like SUCH a slacker.
BZ, Cdr Kim! Aim high! Reach high!


Just ….. DAYUMMMM!


Good Lord, this guy! Here is a link to one of Jocco Willinks’ Podcasts interviewing Jonny. It’s long af, but pretty fascinating. Both those guys are badass. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yujP3-AxXsI


Sierra Hotel


Can my man slow down and leave some accolades for the rest of us?


People like this give me hope for the future. That is a feeling I have in very short supply.

Army-Air Force Guy

He IS the actual Space Shuttle door gunner!


Someone should mail him a certificate. Just too epic a potential story.

Hack Stone

Until he earns the highly coveted and rarely awarded Precious Recovery Expert Badge, he’ll still be reaching for the brass ring.


“Oh my God! It’s Jason Bourne!”


If he plays guitar, and puts a band together, he is Buckaroo Banzai.

Skivvy Stacker

Give that man a Participation Trophy, quick!


Agree, Skivvy, didn’t see any Scout Swimmer school in that C.V.

When I steal valor, it will be as a Scout Swimmer


And here I am just happy to get out of bed in the morning without stepping on my crank.


His wheelbarrow belongs in his official photo. It’s doing all the heavy lifting.

Old tanker

I’m thinking that’s the kind of guy we need as the Sec Nav and later as Sec Def.