|2nd Lieutenant William S. Leslie
9 Oct 1943, Age 20
Friday morning I got a long-awaited letter from the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis in response to my latest requests for my father’s World War II service records. My search was partially successful. It confirmed that I had indeed found his wartime serial number (0-668096) and it also confirmed my long-held suspicion that his complete service records, if they were ever held there, were destroyed in a fire in July 1973. However, the letter also stated that, “[w]e used alternate sources to reconstruct some record data lost in the fire,” and included two copies of a Certification of Military Service that includes his complete dates of service, including a short period as an enlisted man that I did not know about. I am so very proud.
The date of his enlistment conflicts slightly with some other information that I have (ironically, also supplied by the National Archives and Records Administration which oversees the National Personnel Records Center), so I may have to look into this further to make sure the details are correct. Also, although the caption on the original photo of my Dad identifies him as a 1st Lieutenant as of October 1943, I believe he was actually a 2nd Lieutenant at the time. The accident reports I mentioned in a previous entry bear this out.