2 Replies Latest reply on Aug 20, 2020 2:20 PM by Thomas Richardson

    Seeking records of Thomas Pettit

    Erika Alex Newbie

      Hello all. I am researching the brief European Theater army career of my great uncle, Thomas M Pettit, service/serial number #33041230, who was killed in action in Germany in April 1945.


      In reading the obit from the newspaper, found in my grandparents files, it suggests that he was reported missing in action at first in April 15 1945, and his death was confirmed to the family in Sept/October 1945.  He does have an entry in the US WWII Hospital Admission Card files, which relays that he was deceased before arriving in the hospital. There is a note about "Cases reported by AGO only, except death in German or Japanese prison (Officially Declared Dead or Unmatched Reports of Death)".  There is also an Admission Date of April 1945 (but nothing more specific). The admission place is similarly vague: "European Area".


      I have requested his IDPF to try and get more information, but in the meantime i'm trying to parse the clues from this and can't find resources for interpreting these entries in the card files. I do believe his remains were found, as he was originally buried in the cemetery in St Avold and later repatriated and reburied in Arlington.


      Thanks in advance for any information or light you may be able to shed..

        • Re: Seeking records of Thomas Pettit
          joan stachnik Tracker

          Hi Erika, there is a Thomas M. Pettit listed on Familysearch.org (in Findagrave). The following information is provided. Hope this is of some help. joan


          Cpl Thomas Marvin Pettit (1919-1945)

          Born Chinocteague Island, Accomack County, Virginia

          5 April 1919

          Died 15 April 1945 at Ehrenhain, Landkreis Altenburger Land, Thuringen Germany.

          He is buried at Arlington National Cemetary

          If I'm reading the information correctly (CPL AGF FLD ART BN 744 FBN) he was in the 744th Field Artillery Battalion.

          There are also some photos at https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/49351666/thomas-marvin-pettit.

          • Re: Seeking records of Thomas Pettit
            Thomas Richardson Tracker

            Dear Ms. Alex,


            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 enlisted men of the U.S. Army who were separated from the service after October 1912 and prior to 1958 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. You also may fax the form to 314-801-9195. Veterans and their next of kin also may use eVetRecs to request records. See eVetRecs Help for instructions. For more information see Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF), Archival Records Requests.


            You also may check the Hospital Admission Card Files contained in the Records of the Office of the Surgeon General (Army) (Record Group 112) located at the National Archives at College Park. For information on access to this series, please contact Electronic Records (RDE) at cer@nara.gov.


            In addition, we searched the National Archives Catalog and were able to locate his name listed on the World War II Honor List of Dead and Missing Army and Army Air Forces Personnel from Virginia, 1946  in the Records of the Adjutant’s General Office, 1917-1985 (Record Group 407). A ‘Thomas Pettit’ with matching serial number is listed as ‘KIA’ at the rank of Corporal under ‘Accomac’ county. This list is digitized and available for viewing using the Catalog.


            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 RDE. Also, the National Personnel Records Center is is currently only servicing emergency requests and will soon expand its service to include time-sensitive requests from veterans for records needed to secure VA home loan guarantees and employment opportunities. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


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

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