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Missing Service Medical Records



Can anyone make a suggestion on how I should proceed........

I finally got copies of my SMRs.

Wanted to file a claim for Feet and Back Injury sustained in April 1969. I have one IMO that states

"more likely than not" but have run into the following problem with my SMR.

My SMRs have no record of anything between when I got out of Basic Training in March 1868 until I

went to sick call due to back complaint in July 1969 at Naval Station San Diego where I

was sent for additional training from my duty station aboard a Destroyer. I had been aboard

the Destroyer all that time.....one year and 4 months.

A friend of mine sent me a copy of an entry to the ship's deck log in January 1969 showing another

injury I had sustained. That entry to the deck log identifies me, the injury and states that I was treated by medical personnel and returned to duty, but no entry in my medical record. I know I had follow up sick calls for the January 1969 injury. I know I had numerous follow up sick calls for the April 1969 injuries. What could have happened to these missing records?

Has anyone ever had a like problem with missing records and if so; what is my best way to address this?


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Once you get your SMR I don't know.

The normal difficulty is just finding the SMR.

An IMO that says "More likely than not" is 'supposed to be' as good as having it in the records anyway.

My brother-in-law just found his SMR through info he found here.

2 tours in Nam and they said he was never there??

NOW he can go for service connection.


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  • In Memoriam

I got my SMR from a VARO decision in 1985. I found them in an old box. When I sent for a new copy 2001, for my claims, only 10% of the records were sent to me. Most of the Vital information was not in the new copy of records.

It seems since the discovery of AO, Project 112/SHAD, and many more secret experiments, on service people, that many unclassified records have now become classified to deny Veterans involvement with these test. NPRC, is very selective about what they want a Veteran to see, now.

If you kept information from a prior earlier claim (say before the CAVC 1987), that required these SMR, there is the possibility that this would be a area to explore.

My recent BVA (2/06) remand judge, said that the VARO was to submit a complete set of records. Maybe the word complete is the Open-Sesame (magic word given by a higher up), that will make the difference.

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Thanks Stretch,

It didn't even occur to me that they may be missing intentionally.

It does seem strange that the period of records that would do me the most benefit are missing.

I'm trying to get some buddy statements that they will have to consider. One of my ex-shipmates remembers me being injured and recalls me being on crutches for quite a while.

Do you think that thosee statement will be enough to counteract the missing SMRs?


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Guest jstacy

You may want to look at the summary page for the separation physical. It may list the illnesses. Mine did.

Usually when a Corpsman does the physical, Then he gores over the record with the person and purges the record,but writes the information on the summary page. I hope you find it, But I believe you already have enough evidence to file a claim.

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If you ever filed a past claim- the SMRs might be all in your c file- have you asked VA for a complete copy of your c file-

I was astonished when I got copy of mine-

all the missing stuff was in it.

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Yes...I have filed claims before....currently I am SC PTSD 50%, SC Hearing 0%, SC Tinnitis 10%.

I have not ever asked for a copy of the C-file but I intend to do so as per your suggestion.

Is there a special form for doing so, or can I simply call the 800-# ? Any idea how long it will take to get a copy of the file in my hands? It took many months for the VARO in Portland to provide me my SMRs.

If I lived closer, I'd visit their office but I'm nearly 200 miles from the RO.

Probably like most Hadit Members, I wish I had known, 30 some years ago, more about the struggle that awaits any veteran who "finally" reaches out to the VA for assistance to find that what he had imagined was his last two hurdles, (pride and self-reliance), to overcome was merely the first in a long series of seemingly more difficult ones.

I don't participate in the discussion, here on Hadit very much, but I sincerely hope that all of you more knowledgeable members know how much your advice and opining benefit those of us who simply read the posts.

It is certain that "more likely than not" my service connected veterans benefits are due to this forum. Without Hadit, I'd probably not found any relief.

Blessings to all,


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