NPRC backlog finally getting Congressional attention

| February 1, 2021

The KoB sends us a story about a New Hampshire lady who was unable to get her veteran father’s records in time to bury him in a military cemetery. Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH) has now demanded to know what the NPRC is doing with their half-million request backlog and why they haven’t (or how they have) used $50M ($50 million!) in COVID stimulus money they’ve received from Congress.

From the Union Leader;

Charlene Fyfe got stuck in a bureaucratic maze for more than a year, trying just to get a federal employee on the telephone as she searched for the military records of her father, Norman Levesque, 77.

The Milford woman credits Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-NH, and staff with pulling the strings necessary to get those documents to Fyfe a few weeks ago.

They didn’t come until after Levesque died Dec. 12 at a local nursing home, four days after he had gotten COVID-19.

But hers is one of thousands of stories that cry out for reform of the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, Mo. where 60 million paper records of veterans are stored.

By the end of 2020, the backlog had grown to an estimated 445,000 requests for these records, according to Hassan.

Levesque would have been eligible to be buried in the New Hampshire Veterans Center in Boscawen. Without the forms, Charlene’s family paid out of pocket to bury Levesque in town.

“What about somebody who did not have the funds to bury their loved one? That’s the sad thing,” Fyfe said during a telephone interview.

“They’ve got to do something about this system. Even with COVID, there’s no excuse for being told over and over again, ‘Well, there is no one answering the telephone.’’’

Hassan agreed. That’s why last week she wrote a strong-worded letter to Director David Ferriero, seeking accountability, especially since the latest COVID-19 relief package contains $50 million in additional grants for this program.

“I urge you to quickly use this emergency funding provided by Congress to safely resume the processing of all military personnel records requests by veterans,” wrote Hassan, a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee.

Hassan called on the director to explain by Feb. 22 why the program can’t set up a remote call center, and when it will move to use the additional dollars to digitize all the older records.

“I have heard from numerous Granite State veterans about how these operational changes have led to delays in receiving the benefits they deserve and have earned,” Hassan said in a statement. “These delays in benefits can cause potentially irreparable harm to veterans’ health and financial well-being.”

More at the source. We certainly feel their pain. Some of our requests are a part of that backlog, I’m sure.

This is also a great lesson for all of us in making sure we let our loved ones know where to find our records. If you desire a burial in a national or state cemetery, get those docs lined up before something bad happens.

Category: "Your Tax Dollars At Work", Government Incompetence, Guest Link

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Damn shame it took, literally, and Act of Kongress to get something done for this Lady. Good news is that a Kongress Klown Kritter actually did something to earn their pay. Bad news is, typically, almost too little, too late. If the Kongress Klown Kritters are going to continue to throw money at a KNOWN problem, they should at least follow up to make sure the money is spent and the problem is FIXED. Oh…wait! DaHell am I thinking…never mind.

I snagged this article as a follow up to articles and other comments/replies to comments we’ve had of late. Specifically, commenters bitchin’ about the lack of phonies we’ve seen. Maybe they’ll see this and try to keep up more…or read some of the posts that have been made on this subject.

As for the NPRC; Get off your ass, stub out your Camel, pick up a shovel, and start digging thru the backlog. DO YOUR FREAKIN’ JOB! Just as Navy found out back in December, once you get behind, it is hard as all hell to play catch up.

Mason’s right. Make sure your Family knows about your final arrangements. Mine does…after all…Buzzards got to eat…ptui…same as worms!


If it takes a kick in the ass from a US Senator to move NPRC off the dime, it’s past time for a Change of Command there.


Anyone else get the feeling that some (not all) of the staff at NPRC have NO sense of urgency?


“Make sure your Family knows about your final arrangements”

My dad sat down with the funeral director and my brother to
make sure his burial flag would go to me. For years after, my
dad would always say to me when I visited him “make sure you get that flag”
He again sat down with the funeral director years later and again
made sure the flag was to go to me. He also continued to warn me,
“make sure you get that flag”
Upon his burial the flag was presented to my brother. I went after both
the funeral director, my brother and the VA. It took over two years before
I had that burial flag in my hands and to this day it is displayed on
the wall in my home next to my dad’s awards.
Never trust a family member, funeral director or the VA to do the right
thing. It is up to YOU to follow through with the wishes of the veteran.
Sad story, but true.


Respect to your Dad and to you for making sure things went his way.


I totally agree with taking time out to get your records in order, be it military or civilian or both, to make it a smoother transition when the time comes. It doesn’t take that long to get the info together.

I set up a folder and literally named it “Death Folder” that contains bank account numbers, retired military benefits (to include burial acceptance in a state VA Cemetary), insurance policies, etc., for those who would have to deal with my passing. There is no excuse what so ever why one shouldn’t do so.

Ones life can be gone in a flash and it’s best that your paperwork is in order and your wishes are expressed so as to avoid any misunderstanding when the time comes.

I’ve seen it happen too many times when a person passes and those who are left to deal with the aftermath, not knowing exactly what that persons wishes were or how to deal with the benefits/arrangements.

A couple of helpful links.


Same-same, but mine is called “The Death Book” and has a large Death’s Head on the cover and spine!! (^__^)

All my stuff and updated regularly. I also made arrangements for my and my wife’s interment in the VA cemetery at Seaside (Ft. Ord). It took a few minutes to sign and send the documents …. but we’ve got our spot now.


rgr1480, we have a morbid sense of humor, now don’t we. (grin)


He should put one of these photos on there…

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I’ve set up a word document on my laptop main screen of instructions “In the event of my demise” with instructions for death notifications for federal and mil retirement pensions as well as TSP.


Did you have instructions to have someone trusted to: “Please Delete My Browser History”?

😀 😀 😀

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Wife has the death documents. One thing everyone should do is take that DD214 down to the court house and have it recorded. It is accepted by everyone, just like the one they handed you when you left service. it is also a lot easier to go down to the court recorder and get a couple of copies than deal with the folks in St Louis.


I agree with one caveat. Public records at the court house are a prime source of identity theft.

Be careful who you give a DD 214 to.


For years now I have been “pre-approved” to be buried in Boscawen, and Mrs. Sparky knows where to find my 214 and the one-page form I have on file.

No way I would put my family through that kind of stress at such a time. Proactive is the only way to be.