5 Tips for Researching Your Relative’s Vietnam War Service

By Diane Haddad

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I researched my dad’s service with the 14th Combat Engineer Battalion while working on our guide to learning about your relative’s Vietnam War service. My dad was “in country” for about a year in 1968-69. His dad passed away near the end of his tour, so he was sent home a bit early. When I was a kid, he told me he built bridges and they’d get blown up, and he’d build them again. More recently, he asked me for help finding photos of the fire support bases he was on.

Tips for Researching Vietnam War Service

These are some of my steps in researching his service:

14th engineer battalion in vietnam war
  • Fold3 also has a Vietnam Service Awards collection, with memos recommending units and individuals for service, as well as the virtual Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall.
  • The Vietnam War Senior Producer Sarah Botstein told me about Texas Tech University’s Virtual Vietnam Archive of more than 4 million pages of scanned documents. They include after-action or “lessons learned” reports, news articles, maps, memoirs and more.

The Vietnam War website has resources for veterans and historical researchers, and you can share your family’s story and photos online. Here’s our full Vietnam War research guide, with additional help finding records, photos and more.