The Individual Deceased Personnel File (IDPF) (also known as the 293 File) consists of the official documents relating to the handling and ultimate disposition of the remains of individuals who died in service or results of investigations of individual disappearances (MIA, etc.). If you're researching someone who died or was declared missing during the Korean War, the IDPF can be a valuable source of information - especially if your subject's individual personnel record was destroyed in the 1973 fire at NPRC. The following is a simple, inexpensive method for ordering the file:
1. Begin with a twenty-one cent post card (I use the ones available from the Postal Service).
2. Address it to:
PERSCOM ATTN: TAPC-PED-F Alexandria, VA 22231-04822
3. On the reverse (message field) write: "I would like a copy of the IDPF of (name & date or year of birth) who died or disappeared (date of death or disappearance) during the Korean War." (I set my left & right margins and type this in. If your subject has a common name like Jones, Smith, Williams, etc., you'll want to include as much additional information as possible - service number, etc. - to assure accurate identification). The American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) website at < http://www.americanwardead.com/search.htmhttp://www.americanwardead.com/search.htm > may provide information that can assist in ordering your subject's file. You can order up to four files at one time at no charge.
4. Sign your name and drop it in the mail.
In a month or so, you'll receive a form letter acknowledging receipt of your request. You'll receive the file - if they can locate it - in two to six months, depending on their workload.