Navy Information and Resources

Obtaining Your Military Service Records
The information here outlines the steps needed to obtain copies of your milirary records. Keep in mind that this process may take quite a while to complete. By law records can only be released to the individual whose records they are, or if that individual is deceased, their next of kin.

Records of personnel separated more than 15 months ago

The Navy does not maintain the service records of individuals who have separated more than 15 months ago. These records are held by the National Personnel Records Center.

The National Personnel Records Center holds the official individual personnel records of:

What is in these records

These records include:

How to obtain these records

Information from these records is available to the individual, or if deceased, to the next of kin. A separate request should be sent for each veteran. If signed by the next of kin, the relationship to the veteran must be specified and proof of death presented.

To expedite, getting information on an individual's naval career, you need download the Standard Form 180 (This is a .PDF file. To view and print this file, obtain the free Adobe Acrobat reader if you don't have it.)

Fill in the Standard Form 180 (SF 180). You will need to provide the following information: full name under which service was performed, service number and/or Social Security number, branch of service, dates of service, date and place of birth, and grade or rank at time of separation/retirement.

If the service number is unknown, you can usually locate it by sending the individual's name, his command, and when he served in a letter to the Military Reference Branch, National Archives, Washington, DC 20408. That office can usually determine the service number from the command's muster rolls or the list of officers in the deck log of a ship.

Send the completed form to:
The National Personnel Records Center
9700 Page Boulevard
St. Louis, Missouri 63132-5100
Phone: (314) 538-4141/3135/3071/3132

Record retrievals are an arduous process and may take a while.