2 Replies Latest reply on Jun 22, 2021 4:02 AM by pete jude

    Seeking records of CPT HARRY O REINER

    pete jude Newbie

      Hi, I need help with a WWII USAAF pilot who was in the Pacific campaign. Yesterday i was lucky to buy an American DFC officially named & numbered to CPT Harry O Reiner USAAF. He was awarded this in 1943 and was in the Pacific theater in WW2. I am waiting on it to come hopefully tomorrow along with copies of news clippings and other info. For me it is very important to find out as much as i can just to keep his story together. I collect (am no DEALER) and never sell but like to think I am just the custodian of my collection, but it is the history that I love. I am reaching out to anyone who can help me and would be most grateful. Pete.

        • Re: Seeking records of CPT HARRY O REINER
          Eric Kilgore Adventurer

          Dear Pete Jude,


          Thank you for posting your question on History Hub!


          As a good starting point, you should request Harry's Official Military Personnel File.  The Official Military Personnel Files are in the custody of the National Personnel Record Center / National Archives at St. Louis.  However, please note that there was a catastrophic fire in 1973 at the National Personnel Record Center that damaged and destroyed a large portion of Army, Army Air Corps, and Air Force records from that period.  That said, this is still the best place to start when trying to learn more about a veteran's service.  As long as Harry discharged from service on-or-before today's date, 1959 (62 years), his records will be open to the public.  It's not uncommon for officers to serve for 20 years or more so it's possible his records may not have been at the facility at the time of the fire. His length of service can also determine whether or not you'll be able to access his records if 62 years hasn't elapsed since his discharge/retirement. 


          Under normal circumstances, requesting these records is a pretty easy task.  However, due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, and our limited workforce, we are prioritizing requests from veterans and their families for medical emergencies, final military honors, and other essential benefits.  Currently, there is a substantial backlog of routine requests, in addition to the emergency requests awaiting response.  While it is still unknown how soon we will able to resume responding to routine requests,  the National Personnel Record Center is working hard and taking an aggressive approach to decreasing response times and eliminating the backlog. 


          While you are able to submit a request through the EvetRecs portal,  please understand, that your request will be placed into a queue for non-emergency requests until such time as we are able to process it.  You can begin that process here: https://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records


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


          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 RRPO (The National Archives at St. Louis). We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.

          • Re: Seeking records of CPT HARRY O REINER
            pete jude Newbie

            Hi Eric

            thank you so much for your reply, as said i am not to good using this way for info, but you have been most helpful and will send an e mail ( if i am lucky to do so that way) if not it will be the old way letter!

            most grateful once again for all your help

            have a good day