John Reeve joined the RAF in 1965 and after pilot training at Cranwell completed two tours on the Vulcan, first at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire and then at RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus. After a subsequent tour instructing on the Jet Provost at Cranwell, he returned to the Vulcans on 50 Sqn at Waddington just in time for the Falklands War, where he was the captain of Black Buck 2. With the end of the V Force, he completed a further instructional tour on Jet Provosts in Yorkshire before moving to RAF Brize Norton to fly the VC10s. Starting on the passenger C Mk1s on 10 Sqn, he then moved to the tanker variants on 101 Sqn where, once again, he was just in time for the first Gulf War, flying the K Mk2 and K Mk3s from Bahrain, Oman, and Saudi Arabia.
He left the RAF in 1997 and flew Airbus A300s for some years and is currently instructing on jet simulators at the Oxford Aviation Academy at Oxford Airport. He continues to fly, and instruct on, light aircraft in his spare time.