John Cello
The Tactical Pirate logo

The Tactical Pirate

John Cello

27 Years Instructing

Phone: 864 617 4743


Background: Civilian, Former Military, Former Law Enforcement, Instructor target icon

About The Tactical Pirate

John Cello is the president and lead instructor at The Tactical Pirate.

John brings relevant experience to his classes. Unlike other instructors, he doesn’t instruct from theory, but rather from the practical application of weapon handling techniques that he has employed in the real world.

An NRA certified instructor and a retired member of the Georgia Army National Guard where he served as a Military Policeman, he has a long and varied training background.

He deployed to Iraq in ’08 where he served on the personal security detail for the Brigade Signal Shop at Camp Bucca. Deployed to Afghanistan in ’09 – ’10, he was assigned to a Police Mentoring Team in Kunduz Province working with the Afghan National Police as a trainer. John’s PMT team trained the Afghan Police on general police procedures with an emphasis on patrolling techniques and weapons employment.

After returning from Afghanistan, John was assigned to the Pre-Mobilization Training Assistance Element at Ft. Stewart, GA training units deploying to the Mideast on M9, M4\M16, M249, M240, M203, Mk19, and M2 weapons systems.

John’s second tour in Afghanistan in ’12 – ’13 had him assigned as a squad leader to the quick reaction force (QRF) at Camp Phoenix providing emergency response to the Kabul Base Cluster. For actions in this position he was awarded the Bronze Star medal.

John is a former sworn law enforcement officer, having served in the patrol and criminal investigation divisions. He spent several years on a multi-agency narcotics task force in an undercover capacity. He was responsible for writing his agency’s documentation establishing a tactical team, wrote its first operational manual, and was on the first team.

John is an active competitor in IDPA, USPSA, 3 Gun Nation, and Steel Challenge matches.

Courses Taught

CCW, Basic, Intermediate, Advanced, Rifle, Shotgun, NRA Courses, Scenario Based Training, Women's Only Courses, LEO / MIL / SEC Courses, Seminars / Lectures, Tactical Casualty Care (TCCC / TECC) certification icon


NRA Home Firearm Safety
NRA Pistol
NRA Range Safety Officer
NRA Refuse To Be A Victim cancellation policy icon


Cancellation Policy

Cancellations accepted for full refund 5 days or more prior to class date.

Refund Policy

Cancellations accepted for full refund 5 days or more prior to class date.






NRA Courses

Scenario Based Training

Women's Only Courses

Seminars / Lectures