John Dougall Beuret was born on January 17, 1871, in Antwerp, Ohio, and in 1888 was appointed to the US Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland, from his native state. Graduated first in the Class of 1892 on June 3, he was commissioned Assistant Naval Constructor, with the accompanying rank of Lieutenant (junior grade). Advancing progressively in rank he attained that of Rear Admiral, to date from July 2, 1922, while serving as Chief Constructor and Chief of the Bureau of Construction and Repair. On November 20, 1929, he was transferred to the Retired List of the US Navy.
Following graduation in 1892, he attended schools in Paris, France (Ecole des Mines and Ecole du Genie Maritime) until December 1895, when he returned to the United States for duty as Assistant in the Department of Construction and Repair at the Navy Yard, Mare Island, California. He remained there until August 1899, when he became Assistant to the Superintending Constrcutor at the Union Iron Works, San Francisco, California.
Between August 1901 and July 1903 he served at the Naval Station, Cavite, Philippine Islands, after which he was assigned to the Bureau of Construction and Repair, Navy Department, Washington, DC. He reported in December 1904, as Head of the Department of Construction and Repair at the Navy Yard, Puget Sound, Washington, and in July 1911 was transferred to the Navy Yard, Boston, Massachusetts, for duty as Construction Officer until July 1912. He then became Inspector of Hull Material, Eastern District, with headquarters at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
He had special duty in the Department of Justice, Washington, DC, with additional service in the Bureau of Construction and Repair. He was detached from his primary assignment in December 1914 continuing duty in the Bureau of Construction and Repair until October 1920. For his service during World War I, he was awarded the Navy Cross: The citation follows in part:
“For distinguished service in the line of his profession as officer in charge of repairs to naval vessels during the war and of the conversion for naval purposes of vessels taken over by the Navy. In particular, he had charge of planning the conversion of vessels of the mine-laying force in connection with the North Sea barrage.”
Returning to the Navy Yard, Mare Island, in November 1920, he reported as Construction Officer and continued to serve in that capacity until July 2, 1922, when he was commissioned Chief Constructor and Chief of the Bureau of Construction and Repair. He was serving in the second term, when relieved of all active duty pending his retirement on November 20, 1929.
He died on February 15, 1952, at the Naval Hospital, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.