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Thread: FOIA filing for my father's Air Force service records...

  1. #1
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    FOIA filing for my father's Air Force service records...

    I don't know squat about how to do this, what to ask for (I know that "everything" will be laughed at by the powers that be,) what buzz words to include, etc. Given we have a not inconsequential number of people who have served on this forum, I wonder if anyone has any advice to give on how to go about asking. My specific areas of interest are, the places and activities he was performing while on various TDY deployments, where we know he wasn't where he said he was. There is also the aspect of various service medals and awards that are not included in the official documents given to us upon his retirement from active duty. He was gone a lot while I was a child, and I'd like to know why. I'm hoping by now the details would be shareable by the powers that be. (28 years since his death, over 30 years since his retirement.)

    Thanks in advance to anyone who has any helpful suggestions.
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  2. #2
    This is going to be much easier than you think. It isn't actually a foia request.

    Since you are the deceased veteran's next of kind you can go here: https://www.archives.gov/veterans/mi...ervice-records

    and request his records.

    I deal with veteran's records every day and have looked through literally thousands of OMPFS. The exact details of what you are looking for may not be in there, but you may be able to infer alot.

    It is not uncommon for vet's service medals and awards to be incorrect on their DD-214, especially during the era when your dad served.

    Dunno how much of the details you want to share in public, but if you'd like to chat about it some more, hit me up via PM.
    I was into 10mm Auto before it sold out and went mainstream.

  3. #3
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    Hufnagel,

    My Grandfather served in WWII as a B-24 pilot, and the last time I was in DC, I stopped by the National Archives. Little did I know, but the WWII archives are actually in College Park, so the next time I get a chance, that's where I am headed.

    It would be great to see the list of actual missions he flew on top of the stories he still tells to this day.

  4. #4
    Queen of Haikus- PF 2016 Stephanie B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guinnessman View Post
    Hufnagel,

    My Grandfather served in WWII as a B-24 pilot, and the last time I was in DC, I stopped by the National Archives. Little did I know, but the WWII archives are actually in College Park, so the next time I get a chance, that's where I am headed.

    It would be great to see the list of actual missions he flew on top of the stories he still tells to this day.
    WW2 Army/ Army Air Corps service records are not in the National Archives. They're at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis.

    Chances are that they were destroyed in the 1973 fire, though. You can still ask, they may have something.
    Last edited by Stephanie B; 01-11-2017 at 03:22 PM.
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  5. #5
    PF Justice Warrior Chance's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephanie B View Post
    WW2 Army/ Army Air Corps service records are not in the National Archives. They're at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis.

    Chances are that they were destroyed in the 1973 fire, though. You can still ask, they may have something.
    Yeah, my grandfather's records were lost. Fortunately, he was with 1st Cav for the duration, so we know pretty much everything.
    "Trying is the first step toward irritating those around you who know better." - @angry_prof

  6. #6
    Hillbilly Elitist Malamute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephanie B View Post
    WW2 Army/ Army Air Corps service records are not in the National Archives. They're at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis.

    Chances are that they were destroyed in the 1973 fire, though. You can still ask, they may have something.
    Would records for AF from the mid-late 50s have been in the group that were in the fire?

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Malamute View Post
    Would records for AF from the mid-late 50s have been in the group that were in the fire?
    On July 12, 1973, a fire at the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) in St. Louis destroyed approximately:

    80 percent of the records NPRC held for Veterans who were discharged from the Army (this includes the Army Air Corp) between
    November 1, 1912, andJanuary 1, 1960, and

    75 percent of the records NPRC held for Veterans
    with surnames beginning (alphabetically) with Hubbard and running through the end of the alphabet, and
    who were discharged from the Air Force between September 25, 1947, and January 1, 1964.

    Unfortunately it was the practice at the time to store Service Treatment Records (the vet's medical records or "STRS") and Official Military Personnel File (OMPF) together, so many of these vets lost BOTH records.

    However, if an affected veteran filed a claim with the Department of Veterans Affairs prior to the date of the fire, the original paper records were likely sen to the VA. In the vast majority of cases this would have been only the STRs.

    I believe to retrieve those records from VA, you would have to do a FOIA request.
    I was into 10mm Auto before it sold out and went mainstream.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephanie B View Post
    WW2 Army/ Army Air Corps service records are not in the National Archives. They're at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis.

    Chances are that they were destroyed in the 1973 fire, though. You can still ask, they may have something.
    Thanks for the heads up! The lady at National Archives told me to go to College Park.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Guinnessman View Post
    Thanks for the heads up! The lady at National Archives told me to go to College Park.
    I deal with the National Archives frequently. I have concluded that either 1) they don't know what the fuck they are doing or 2) they take a perverse pleasure in sending people on wild goose chases.
    I was into 10mm Auto before it sold out and went mainstream.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lester Polfus View Post
    This is going to be much easier than you think. It isn't actually a foia request.

    Since you are the deceased veteran's next of kind you can go here: https://www.archives.gov/veterans/mi...ervice-records

    and request his records.

    I deal with veteran's records every day and have looked through literally thousands of OMPFS. The exact details of what you are looking for may not be in there, but you may be able to infer alot.

    It is not uncommon for vet's service medals and awards to be incorrect on their DD-214, especially during the era when your dad served.

    Dunno how much of the details you want to share in public, but if you'd like to chat about it some more, hit me up via PM.
    Thanks! I've submitted a request. Let's see what they come back with.
    Rules to live by: 1. Eat meat... 2. Shoot guns... 3. Fire... 4. Gasoline... 5. Make juniors
    TDA: Learn it. Live it. Love it.

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