3 Replies Latest reply on Jan 25, 2021 1:36 PM by Lisa Sharik

    Seeking citation for BSM that Elmer Trudell received

    Emily Trudell Newbie

      My grandfather's name is Elmer W Trudell, whom  I have never met. He is part Santee Sioux.   I know very little about him. The inscriptions on his headstone read this: ELMER W TRUDELL; NEBRASKA; CPL 662 OM RAILHEAD CO; WORLD WAR II; BSM; MARCH 13 1919 to AUG 7 1967. From things i have read, i thought the BSM stood for Bronze Star Medal, so i went to valor.militarytimes.com, which states it is a complete list of bronze star medal recipients, and he is not on that list. i went through all 60+ pages and found nothing. I would like help on locating more information about him. I do not know where to look so I am seeking to be pointed in the right direction. Any help is greatly appreciated.



      Elmer W Trudell headstoneelmer trudell

        • Re: Seeking citation for BSM that Elmer Trudell received
          Elliot Schneider Ranger



          Here is some information. (To enlarge image click on the photo) Also not sure if a typo on your grandfathers grave stone but it should read QM which stands for 662nd Quartermaster(QM) Railhead Company, maybe my eyes are bad.






          Hope This helps,


          Elliot Schneider

          • Re: Seeking citation for BSM that Elmer Trudell received
            Jason Atkinson Ranger

            Dear Ms. Trudell,


            Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


            The database on the Military Times Hall of Valor is not a complete or official list but an ongoing project which accepts submissions from the public.  See their About page for more information, to include how to submit your grandfather’s name to be added to the database


            We suggest that you request a copy of his Official Military Personnel File (OMPF), which should include information about any awards. OMPFs and individual medical reports for enlisted men of the U.S. Army who were separated from the service after October 1912 and prior to 1959 are in the custody of NARA's National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis. In many cases where personnel records were destroyed in the 1973 fire, proof of service can be provided from other records such as morning reports, payrolls, and military orders, and a certificate of military service will be issued. Please complete a GSA Standard Form 180 and mail it to NARA's National Personnel Records Center, (Military Personnel Records), 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO  63138-1002. If there is any information requested by the form that you do not know, you may omit it or provide estimates (such as for dates), but the more information you provide, the easier it will be to locate the correct file if it survived the fire. For more information see Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF), Archival Records Requests.


            We  searched National Archives Catalog and located Applications for Headstones, 1/1/1925 - 6/30/1970 in the Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General (Record Group 92) that includes the headstone application for your grandfather. We are attaching a copy to the end of our reply. The application references his Bronze Star Medal (BSM), and indicates that he served in the 662nd Quartermaster Railhead Company.


            Next, we located the World War II Operations Reports, 1940-1948 in the Records of the Adjutant General's Office, 1917-1985 (Record Group 407) that may include general orders of the 662nd Quartermaster Railhead Company. For more information about these records, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) via email at archives2reference@nara.gov.


            Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT2. Also, the NPRC is closed except for emergencies. Currently, NPRC will continue servicing requests ONLY associated with medical treatments, burials, and homeless veterans seeking admittance to a homeless shelter. If your request is urgent, please see Emergency Requests and Deadlines. Please refrain from submitting non-emergency requests such as replacement medals, administrative corrections, or records research until NPRC returns to pre-COVID staffing levels. Please check archives.gov/veterans for updates to the NPRC operating hours and status. We apologize for any inconvenience.


            Finally, we searched Ancestry and located a document in the Iowa, U.S., World War II Bonus Case Files, 1947-1954 that may be for your grandfather. We are attaching a copy to the end of our reply. It matches in all the particulars on the headstone application except that the Iowa application shows his birth date as March 13, 1920 instead of March 13, 1919.  While the form does not reference awards, it does provide his service number, entry date, and separation date, that you should include on the SF-180. These Iowa records did not come from the National Archives, but were provided to Ancestry by the State Historical Society of Iowa.


            We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your family research!

            1 person found this helpful
            • Re: Seeking citation for BSM that Elmer Trudell received
              Lisa Sharik Adventurer

              Ms. Trudell:

              The Military Times site only lists Bronze Star Medals for Valor. There are two kinds of Bronze Stars, the one for Valor would have a specific citation, the one for Meritorious Service would not. The Bronze Star Medal for Meritorious service was much more common. I've attached a page from one of our units to give you an idea. This is one of 5 pages for a single Infantry Regiment for one month in 1945.


              Your grandfather would still have his name listed in a General Order like this one if he received a Bronze Star for Meritorious Service. Someone from the National Archives will likely post and tell you what files they have which contain that information.



              Lisa Sharik

              Deputy Director

              Texas Military Forces MuseumBronze Star list

              2 people found this helpful