Capt. David O. Bynum reported as fleet chaplain, U.S. Pacific Fleet in July 2016.
Bynum, a native of San Saba, Texas, accepted a commission of lieutenant in the U.S. Naval Reserve on Sept. 19, 1995 and began his active duty service on Oct. 1, 1995 at the chaplain school in Newport, Rhode Island.
His initial assignment was with 3rd Medical Battalion, 3rd Force Service Support Group in Okinawa, Japan from 1995–1998 where he served as battalion chaplain. During this tour Bynum served as the Combat Service Support Detachment (CSSD) chaplain for UFL 1996 in Pohang, Korea and deployed as the command chaplain with the special Marine Air Ground Task Force assigned to JTF Operation Pacific Haven in Guam from December 1996–March 1997.
Returning to the States in 1998, he served as the wing chaplain at Naval Air Station Kingsville from 1998–2002. During this tour he qualified for back seat flights in the T-45, accumulating over 150 flight hours and numerous carrier landings. While in Kingsville, Bynum was privileged to attend the basic airborne course at Ft. Benning, Georgia where he received his jump wings. After the events of Sept. 11, 2001, he was selected to serve on the Joint Forces Maritime Component Commander staff at 5th Fleet headquarters in Bahrain from October 2001 to March 2002 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
Having selected for lieutenant commander in August 2001, Bynum was given his next assignment of post-graduate education at Duke University. He pinned on lieutenant commander on July 1, 2002 and moved on to Duke where he completed a Master of Theology degree in religion in culture, May 2003. Upon completion of his training at Duke, he reported to Commander, Logistics Group Western Pacific in Singapore as staff chaplain from June 2003–June 2006. He augmented to the regular Navy in May 2005.
Bynum reported to USS Nimitz (CVN-68) in July 2006 where he served as staff chaplain and completed two western Pacific deployments. During this tour he selected for commander and promoted on June 1, 2008.
After attending the supervisory chaplain’s course at Newport, Rhode Island in June 2008, Bynum served from July 2008 to April 2011 as chaplain, Submarine Force, and U.S. Pacific Fleet.
From May 2011 to April 2012 Bynum served as the deputy command chaplain for U.S. Forces Afghanistan in Kabul in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
After his return to the continental United States, he graduated in the 2013 class at the National War College in Washington, D.C. with a Master of Science degree in strategic studies. His follow-on tour was director, plans and operations at OPNAV (N097), Chief of Chaplains. Bynum was promoted to captain on Sept. 1, 2013.
Prior to his naval service, he worked in civilian ministry in Churches of Christ from 1986 to 1995 in Waco and Hearne, Texas. While ministering in Hearne he completed his Doctor of Ministry at Abilene Christian University. Before entering civilian ministry, he completed a Bachelor of Arts in biblical studies and a Master of Divinity degree.
Bynum is authorized to wear the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal (2 gold stars), Navy Commendation Medal (2 gold stars), Navy Achievement Medal (2 gold stars), Basic Jump Wings, and various other individual and unit decorations.