John Hamilton is the eldest child of the Reverend Morgan and his wife, Patricia. He grew up in Glen Oak, California with 3 younger siblings: Keesha, Nigel and Lynn Hamilton.
In 1996, The Hamilton Church was burned down and family friend and fellow Reverend Eric Camden and his wife, Annie took the Hamilton's in. During this time, John and Matt did not really get along, while Keesha got along with Mary and Lucy. Simon Camden and John's younger brother, Nigel, became best friends later on, and Ruthie and Lynn were best friends for a couple of years.
Upon high school graduation, John went out to Tennessee for college, but returned only a year later to attend classes at Crawford. Shortly after moving back to California, he found an apartment with Matt Camden. The two became best friends, sharing the rent of their shared studio apartment and working at Glen Oak Community Hospital.
During this time, John also managed to help Simon Camden with his involvement in a shady crowd and set him back on the straight and narrow path.
Late in 2000 John meet Priscilla Carter who he fell head over heels for forcing Matt to move back home. On May 21, 2001 John and Priscilla were married in New York after the wedding was moved out east because of his grandmother's illness. It is thought that John and Priscilla remained together.
John and Matt sadly lost touch afterwards, although he was briefly mentioned before Matt's wedding to Sarah, when Matt asked Robbie to be his best man; Matt stated that John was "out of town", implying he returned to California for the rest of college. However, John was never mentioned again.