John Clavell, or "Gentleman Johnny" as he was also known, was one of the original members of the infamous Black Widow Company under Natasha Kerensky. He was later put in command of the Black Widow Battalion after Kerensky returned to the Clans.
 Early Dragoon Career
He often referred to Kerensky as "The Lady", and originally piloting a Rifleman commanded his own recon lance. He was transferred to her company after killing a fellow officer in a duel which nearly got him executed by Jaime Wolf. John is a very capable commander and a brilliant tactician, but his slight recklessness has led him to take unnecessary risks at times. A prime example of this is that even though his lance's original role was intended to be strictly reconnaissance, he treated it more like a fast attack lance. Sometime between 3025 and 3028, John lost his Rifleman and began to use a Firefly, which was much better suited to leading a recon lance due to its speed.
 Post-4th Succession War
After the 4th Succession War, the Black Widow Company expanded to a Battalion and became the first Dragoon command to return to active service. John was promoted to Captain and given command of 1st Battlemech Company (The Wolf Spiders). They would see action on Kujari in 3032 and elsewhere. The Black Widow Battalion was further expanded to a cluster for training new recruits in anti-Clan warfare. (Note that they did not use the 'Cluster' designation at the time, as the Inner Sphere was still unaware of the Clan threat. During the War of 3039, the unit saw combat against a Marik incursion on Hall.
When Natasha Kerensky answered the call to return to clan space, command of the Black Widow Battalion fell to Jaime Wolf's son, Mackenzie Wolf. At this time the unit was renamed the Wolf Spider Battalion. When Mackenzie was promoted to second-in-command of the Dragoons, John was put in command and promoted to Major.
 Dragoon Civil War
Clavell was wounded prior to the Dragoon Civil war, so command of the Wolf Spiders fell to Captain Maeve, who would ultimately become Jaime Wolf's second-in-command. Following this, John would resume command of the Wolf Spiders.
It is confirmed that Clavell was still in command of the Battalion at the start of the Jihad, and fought during the second Blakist attack on Outreach. It is strongly implied, though not explicitly stated, that he was killed when the Broadsword Legion betrayed the Dragoons and destroyed most of the Wolf Spider Battalion.
- It is indicated the Clavell was piloting a Clan Omnimech after the unit was reformed and up until death, but the precise machine has not been identified.
- Having appeared in Tales of the Black Widow Company, the first sourceboook of the franchise, Clavell was, in effect, one of the longest active characters in the Battletech universe.