RIchard Horrell states "IF the Veteran registered a copy of their Discharge Documents at the Courthouse of the County that they would reside in after WW 2, you, I or anyone else can visit that Courthouse & obtain a copy of the Veteran's Discharge Documents. Discharge Documents are in the Public Domain, so anyone may obtain a copy. Anyone who says differently is misleading others."
The if is a big question - many ww-ii vets did not register with their county recorder. If so yes they are public records. AS for NPRC in St Louis - WW-II Officers records are not necessarily public record.
I requested records for a friend who is desceased giving them all the infomation we had from his obituary - 4 valor awards DSC, 2 SS, BS, 2 PH, CIB, rank and division plus his officers service number. His widow did not have a copy of his separation record, nor was one in the county records. Thus he was not eligible for a Flag at burial.
I received a phone call - with the comment by the NPRC officer - "You have more information about the veteran than we do. I can read you the details of his separation papers which give his last Rank and Batallion plus his non-valor medals. Only his unmarried widow, or a direct blood relative can receive a hard copy of his records. Valor awards and PH were lost in the 1973 fire. You will need to find them in the Army, Corps or Division General Orders depending on which level issued the award."