The Individual Deceased Personnel File (IDPF) consists of documents relating to the handling and ultimate disposition of the remains of individuals who died in service. If you're researching someone who died while serving during World War II, the IDPF may be of interest. The following is a simple, inexpensive procedure I've formulated and used during my more than forty-five years of conducting this type of research:
1. Begin with a twenty-three cent post card (I recommend those available at your nearest post office).
2. Address it to:
PERSCOM ATTN: TAPC-PED-F Alexandria, VA 22231-04822
3. On the reverse (or message field) write (or type): "I would like a copy of the IDPF of (your individual's name) who died (your individual’s date of death) during WWII." NOTE: Military service numbers aren’t necessary or required.
4. If your individual had a common name - Smith, Jones, Williams, etc. - you might want to include additional information, such as date of birth, military service number, etc. Again, this isn’t required or necessary but, in such instances, may hasten the process.
5. Sign the card and drop it in the mail. In about a month, you’ll receive a standard reply acknowledging receipt of your request. You’ll receive the file in two to six months, depending on their workload.
If your subject is interred in an American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) Cemetery, you may find him listed at < http://www.americanwardead.com/searchww.htmhttp://www.americanwardead.com/searchww.htm > (click on the address and follow directions at the website). IMPORTANT: This website was produced by a private concern and much of the information, although obtained from official sources, is incorrect. Caveat Emptor.