9 Replies Latest reply on Jan 24, 2021 9:12 PM by Elliot Schneider

    Seeking medical & military records of my relative

    R. Mark Binderman Newbie

      I would like to learn which Vietnam combat operations my relative participated in from 1965 to 1966.  He was mortally wounded during combat in January 1966 and soon after that he died in hospital.  I would also like to obtain records of his medical care from the time he was wounded until his death, including a description of his wounds and treatment provided.

        • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
          Elliot Schneider Pioneer

          Mr. Binderman,

           

          Do you have any additional information on your relative, name, DOB, place of birth?

           

           

           

           

          Thanks,

           

          Elliot Schneider

            • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
              R. Mark Binderman Newbie

              Thank you for your response, Mr. Schneider.

              Yes, I have all such information about this paratrooper, including his name, DOB, birthplace, unit (by company and brigade), dates of service, action and date in which mortally wounded, SSN, serial number, etc.  He was the brother of my wife, and so I believe she is authorized to view his records.

              With appreciation,

                    Mark

                • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
                  Elliot Schneider Pioneer

                  Mr. Binderman,

                   

                  with all due respect some of the information on third party websites are accessible to the general public, but yes your wife would have to request any records that would have to come from her. But there are other sites we here can access that are able to help you and your wife narrow down information that you are seeking or at least point you in the proper direction for your search.

                   

                  Thanks,

                   

                  Elliot Schneider

                    • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
                      R. Mark Binderman Newbie

                      Mr. Schneider:

                       

                      As you explained, I've been able to find relevant information on the web, including:  the "After Action Report" describing the combat in which he was wounded; a history of his unit, D Company of the 16th Artillery, 173rd Airborne Brigade (Separate),  on that Company's website; and a history of the 173rd Brigade on the Brigade website.  Additional details of the combat in which he was mortally wounded are included in his posthumous Bronze Star commendation. Also, I have looked at these two government websites concerning military records.

                       

                      (1) About Military Service Records and Official Military Personnel Files (OMPFs, DD Form 214) [https://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/about-service-records-0]  states that "Military personnel records are primarily administrative records and can contain information . . . " and "Detailed information about the veteran's participation in military battles and engagements is NOT contained in the record."  While some of that administrative information would be useful, I hope to learn which Operations he participated in prior to Operation Crimp in January of 1966.

                       

                      (2) Veterans' Medical and Health Records" [https://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/medical-records.html]  seems to suggest that the medical records describing his wounds and treatment might not be available.  Those are the records I would like to obtain.  By the way, in regards to his wounds, it's interesting that the wounds as described in the After Action Report differs from how they were reported to his family by the Army:  specifically the Report states he suffered wounds to both arms but makes no mention of the chest wound which his family believes caused his death.  Perhaps while in the hospital for treatment of his arm wounds he succumbed to a chest infection of some sort and his family misunderstood this as a battle wound to his chest.  In any event, this is one of the questions I hope to address through my research.

                       

                      Thank you,

                      Mark

                • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
                  Sylvia Naylor Scout

                  Dear Mr. Binderman,

                   

                  Thank you for posting your inquiry on History Hub!

                   

                  Since the unit actually is Company D, 16th Armor instead of Company D, 16th Artillery, we searched the National Archives Catalog and located the series Armor Unit Records, ca. 1965 - ca. 1971 in the Records of the U.S. Forces in Southeast Asia (Record Group 472) that includes an Organizational History for 1963 to 1968 (Box 1) and Daily Journals for 05/04/1966 to 01/06/1967 (Box 2) of Company D,16th Armor. For more information about these records, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) via email at archives2reference@nara.gov.

                   

                  We also located Situation Reports (SITREPS), 8/1965 - 12/1970; Operational Reports - Lessons Learned (ORLL), 5/1/1965 - 4/30/1971; Daily Journals, 5/1965 - 12/1970; After Action Reports (AAR), 7/1965 - 8/1971; Command Reports, 5/1965 - 8/1971; and Command Historian After Action Reports, 1965 - 1972 in Record Group 472 that are records of the 173rd Airborne Brigade that may provide a higher level perspective of the events during 1965 - 1966. For questions about these records, please contact RDT2.

                   

                  The specific information you seek may be contained in your relative’s Individual Deceased Personnel File (IDPF). IDPFs from 1940-1976 for personnel with surnames that begin with A-L are in the custody of the National Archives at St. Louis (RL-SL). For access to these records, please contact RL-SL via email at stl.archives@nara.gov.

                   

                  For the IDPFs of personnel with surnames that begin with M-Z, please write to U.S. Army Human Resources Command, Casualty & Memorial Affairs Operations Division, ATTN: AHRC-PDC, 1600 Spearhead Division Avenue, Department 450, Fort Knox, KY 40122-5405. They are being scanned by the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency in order to properly identify remains of those still listed as missing.

                   

                  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 & RL-SL. We apologize for any inconvenience.

                   

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

                   

                  1 person found this helpful
                    • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
                      R. Mark Binderman Newbie

                      Thank you so much, Ms. Naylor.  I am in the process of requesting the materials you cited from the National Archives.  Yesterday I sent an email there for one set of records.  Today I attempted to send another email for more records, using the same email address: archives2reference@nara.gov.

                      Strangely, today's email could not be delivered. Please check the message recipient "archives2reference@nara.gov." and try again. Of course this is confusing since, as I said, the email I sent yesterday was accepted.  Do you have a suggestion as to how I could solve this problem? Thank you.

                        • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
                          Sylvia Naylor Scout

                          Dear Mr. Binderman,

                           

                          Thank you for posting your follow-up request on History Hub!

                           

                          Your first request was received by RDT2 and has been assigned to a staff member for a response. We are sorry you were not successful with submitting your second request. It might have been a glitch in the system. Please feel free to resubmit your second request to archives2reference@nara.gov. We regret any inconvenience this may have caused you.

                           

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

                           

                          2 people found this helpful
                            • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
                              R. Mark Binderman Newbie

                              In regards to specific information regarding his wounds and treatment, RDT2 explained that I would need to seek records from the hospital where he was treated.  I do not know at what facility he died, which was just 4 days after he sustained his wounds in combat.  RDT2 also said that no records of treatment "in the field" would exist.  So, I need to determine if he was evacuated to a nearby treatment facility (something like a "MASH" I suppose), or to a major hospital. How do I obtain records from either of those facilities?  I don't know if it is relevant but when wounded he was in the area of Vietnam referred to as the Iron Triangle. Thanks so much

                                • Re: Seeking medical & military records of my relative
                                  Elliot Schneider Pioneer

                                  Hello Mark,

                                   

                                  Morning reports for the unit will tell you what you need regarding being evacuated and what evacuation hospital he ended up being taken to. You will need to follow up with Ms. Naylors comment and seek his IDPFs File it may contain the clues your seeking those reports are either well done or very limited depending on the amount of information that the file contains and who filled the report out.

                                   

                                   

                                   

                                  Elliot Schneider

                                  2 people found this helpful