The alien criminal Dargin Bokk gathered together a group of 6 inventors to help him create an army of expendable but repairable robots. Mondu was an alien who discovered a way to move a mind into storage. Manjeda was an alien who developed a teleportation system that could replace one person with another. Graczia was an alien who studied telepathy. Ocsh discovered a dimension known as null space. Byron was from Earth and was an expert in robotics. Together being supervised by Bokk's scientist brother Dargin Ryne they created 5 Darkhawk bodies. Mondu, Mandeja, Graczia, Ocsh and Byron stole the 5 Darkhawk bodies to keep them from falling into Bokk's hands. During the mutiny Bokk killed Manjeda and stole her Darkhawk amulet and became Evilhawk. Ocsh was damaged by an explosion when he tried to change back to human form and his mind merged with the space ship they were in. Byron and Mondu used the mental projection aspect of their amulets to beam their consciousnesses to earth where they merged with two participants in the USA who were part of an experiment in testing ESP. Byron's mind merged with Ned Dobbs while Mondu's mind merged with John Trane aka St. Johnny. Together they tried to recreate a sixth Darkhawk amulet to protect them from Evilhawk never suspecting that they were in fact being manipulated by Evilhawk who had been aware of all of this and waiting for someone to unlock the power of the amulet. Using Kig's techno-virus he was able to manipulate Dobbs and St. Johnny into being Darkhawk's protectors while also spying on him. Johnny and Ned lived as hobos. 
Later retcons revealed Evilhawk and many other characters connected to Darkhawk's origin were hallucinations created by the Darkforce amulet because Chris Powell's mind was incapable of processing the information given to him by the datasong the flow of information that comes with the raptor bodies. Evilhawk, Overhawk, and Osch are figments of Chris's mind. This retcon renders much of St. Johnny's origin unusable but considering he met Chris before he became Darkhawk he probably can't be explained away as a figment of Chris's imagination.
- Recent retcons have made details of St. Johnny's origin almost impossible to reconcile.