The below thread regarding the search for a James F. Smith is perhaps a good example of creating, and then proving, a FALSE POSITIVE.
The writer has established several false premises upon which they wish to conduct a search.
First is establishing the name.
Through some documentation they have postulated the name JAMES F. SMITH and an address either pre- or post-war.
Portsmouth, VA, is NOT the same as Richmond, VA.
They have established a unit affiliation of 505th PIR, 82nd Abn only on the evidence that this was the largest American unit nearby to where the events took place--Leicester, England--specifically Camp Quorn.
By checking the enlistment records for the name they have identified a soldier by that name from Richmond, Virginia, born in 1913.
They have arbitrarily ascribed his service number (ASN) (therefore establishing a very specific individual) to the individual named in the original premise.
They have compounded their error by taking"ASN Smith" and proposing that his birth year is the same as that of the original target.
ALL IN ALL THIS WOULD NOT HOLD UP IN COURT.
It is a HUGE error to take a proposed target (ASN Smith born 1913) and put him in the original scenario.
First of all someone born in 1913 is unlikely to have been a paratrooper.He would have been at least 30 years old come D-Day.It is not impossible, but would have been VERY MUCH the exception.
Second, examination of the Rosters of the 505th PIR reveal NO PERSON named JAMES F. SMITH in the ranks of any of the 505th PIR Companies---this includes HHQ; Svc; 1st Bn HQ, A, B,and C Cos; 2nd Bn HQ, D, E,and F Cos; 3rd Bn HQ, G, H and I Cos.
Because no person named James F. Smith served in the 505th PIR, then "ASN Smith" born 1913 was NOT in the 505th PIR of the 82nd Abn.
NO PERSON named JAMES F. SMITH was in the 505th PIR.
"ASN Smith" who entered service in Richmond, VA, has no immediate connection to Portsmouth, VA.
The original writer either has the wrong name and, or, the wrong unit.
They must not presume a unit identity of the 505th based only on Leicestershire--or even Camp Quorn.
The second identity of the unit there was the 505th Regimental Combat Team--which included not only the 505th PIR, but also elements of the 307 Airborne Engineers, assigned Artillery, Medical and other individually numbered support units.
Add to that, the majority of the 82nd Airborne DIVISION was stationed in Leicestershire.
This is an example of a searcher altering evidence to fit a preconceived scenario.
Very DANGEROUS STUFF especially when attempting a paternity search.
David R. Berry PFHISTCONSULTANT@aol.com www.pathfinderhistoricalconsultants.com