Maj Daniel Ford enlisted in the Marine Corps in October 2001 and served as a 6217 Fixed Wing Aircraft Mechanic with VMFA-134 before attending the United States Naval Academy. He graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant on 25 May 2007.
After completing the Basic School in January 2008, 2ndLt Ford entered flight training at NAS Pensacola, Florida with follow-on training at NAS Whiting Field, Florida with VT-2. He was winged as a Naval Aviator on 11 Apr 2010 at NAS Meridian, MS. After completion of flight training with VT-7 he reported to Marine Attack Training Squadron 203, Cherry Point, North Carolina, for training in the AV-8B Harrier.
1stLt Ford reported to Marine Attack Squadron 211 in Yuma, AZ in May of 2011 and served as a daily schedule writer and S-4 Officer. He deployed in Apr 2012 with VMA-211 to Kandahar and Camp Bastion, Afghanistan in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. In July 2013 he served an Individual Augmentation deployment to the Combined Air Operations Center (CAOC) at Al Udied, Qatar and served as an Air Defense Planner the Combat Plans division of the US Air Force 609th Air Operations Center.
Following completion of his first tour of duty, Capt Ford reported to 3d Light Armored Reconnaissance (LAR) Battalion, Twentynine Palms, CA to serve as a Forward Air Controller (FAC). While serving with the Wolfpack, he deployed in Jan 2015 on the Unit Deployment Program (UDP) to Okinawa, Japan, and participated in exercises in the Philippines and Camp Fuji, Japan. As a FAC, he earned the Joint Terminal Air Controller Evaluator qualification, and attended Mountain Warfare Training Center in Bridgeport, CA and the Jungle Warfare Training Center at Camp Gonsalves, Okinawa.
In July 2015, Capt Ford once again checked in to VMA-211 where he served as the Aviation Life Support Systems division OIC. After the squadron transitioned to the F-35, he moved to MAG-13 staff as the Current Operations Officer. In February 2017, he deployed with Marine Attack Squadron 311 on the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit in Iwakuni, Japan. During this deployment the squadron participated in Exercise Max Thunder in South Korea and Talisman Sabre in Australia. While assigned to the Tomcats, he served as the Assistant Operations Officer, Pilot Training Officer, Ground Safety Officer and Quality Assurance Officer.
In July of 2018, Maj Ford reported to MAG-14, MCAS Cherry Point as the Assistant Operations Officer. In Jan 2019, he checked in with the Ace of Spades as the Director of Safety and Standardization. In Jun 2019, Maj Ford was assigned to Marine Attack Squadron 542 as the Future Operations Officer and deployed with VMM-365 (REIN) on the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit on the USS Bataan. During this deployment, the detachment flew combat missions in support of Operation INHERENT RESOLVE into Iraq and Syria.
After returning from the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, Maj Ford once again checked in to the Ace of Spades in Sep 2021, where he has served as the Aircraft Maintenance Officer and Executive Officer. Maj Ford has accumulated over 1100 hours in the AV-8B. His personal decorations include the Air Medal Strike/Flight with Numeral 4, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.