|The VA can help track down veterans.|
A veteran may be the key to unlocking some of your family history. Perhaps a soldier is a long-last family member. Or a veteran may have served with your grandfather, father, brother or uncle (or grandmother, mother, sister or aunt) and have information that can help fill in the details of your family tree.
The problem, of course, is finding a veteran whose name doesn't show up in the phone book or any other of the usual people-find resources.
The Department of Veterans Affairs can help! Write a letter to the veteran you want to contact. Then write a seperate note to the VA explaining who you want to contact -- name, branch (Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force), unit and any other information you have. If they have an address on file, Veterans Affairs will forward your letter to the veteran in question.
With luck, the soldier gets back in touch with you, and your investigation begins.
P.S. And, of course, you can use this to find buddies you served with, even if genealogy isn't the reason.
Don't forget to also check for your family history at Ancestry.com and NewspaperArchive. These are subscription databases, but they are among the most powerful research tools available for looking into family roots.