4 Replies Latest reply on Jan 26, 2021 10:10 AM by Fred Medlin

    Seeking meaning of FSSD on DD-214

    Fred Medlin Newbie

      My USAF family member has a DD-214 with an enlistment date of 1/1951 and discharge of 11/1954. In item 38, 'Remarks', the form indicates an FSSD of '17 April 1954' with 11 months of overseas service. What is the FSSD and how does it relate to his 11 months of overseas service? Thanks!

        • Re: Seeking meaning of FSSD on DD-214
          Elliot Schneider Ranger



          According to my records it states that "FSSD"  stands for Foreign Service Selection Date.


          Hope this helps,


          Elliot Schneider

          2 people found this helpful
          • Re: Seeking meaning of FSSD on DD-214
            Fred Medlin Newbie

            Thanks, that's a great start. I would really like to know what that selection date means.


            For example, is that the date when combat deployment ended? Or when the individual returned to the US? It was definitely towards the end of my family member's time in Korea.



            • Re: Seeking meaning of FSSD on DD-214
              Holly Rivet Tracker

              Dear Mr. Medlin,


              Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


              We suggest that you request a copy of his Official Military Personnel File (OMPF). OMPFs and individual medical reports for those who served in the U.S. Air Force who were separated from the service after 1946 and before 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.  Or you may apply online at https://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/.  For more information see Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF), Archival Records Requests


              We were unable to locate an Air Force acronym for FSSD, but the Army defines it as Foreign Service Selection Date.  According to the, Air Force Manual, Volume 35, Issue 11, United States. Dept. of the Air Force, Department of the Air Force., 1958, “Generally, the FSSD is the date the person arrived within the continental limits of the United States after completion of a foreign service tour of duty.”  For more information on this topic, please visit the Google Book ebook version of this manual for free.


              Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 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.


              We hope this information is helpful.



              Holly Rivet

              1 person found this helpful
                • Re: Seeking meaning of FSSD on DD-214
                  Fred Medlin Newbie

                  Thank you so much! That is super helpful; especially the citation and the link to the ebook version!  I'll leave this here as anecdotal for anyone finding this thread with similar questions about Korean War DD-214:

                  1. My relative's FSSD is 17 April 1954 which based on this answer I believe is return to US from Korea.

                  2. The dd-214 has 11 months 7 days credit for foreign service

                  3. I have photographic evidence of my relative in Korea as far back as December 1952

                  4. I have a reliable, 1st person account of my relative as far back as October 1952


                  There are at least two possibilities of the time discrepancy:

                  1. The foreign service credit ended with the armistice on 27 July 1953. That would indicate an August 1952 arrival date in Korea that matches my evidence.

                  2. My relative did not get credit for hospitalization in Japan. So far, I have no documentation for that period, so I can't verify or discount that option. I hope the ebook that Holly linked will explain the foreign service credit and how that is affected by hospitalization, R&R and return travel to the US.