- As you may recall, I submitted my order to NARA in November 2009 (November 6th to be precise). Then I waited patiently, as you do.
- February 1st rolls around and, hey, still no pension. Starting to get a little worried...
- Valentine's Day goes by and guess what? No pension.
- I finally contacted NARA at the end of the month (after 16 weeks had passed) and got a very prompt reply. They had lost my order.
- My order got fast tracked after this and a week later I got a letter in the mail from NARA stating that while they should have his file, they didn't. They have all closed files (meaning no one was collecting on them any more) before 1929. John's widow, Susanna collected on his pension after his death and didn't die until 1932, I think that's why NARA didn't have it.
- So I wrote a letter to Veterans Affairs (as I was instructed to do).
- About a week later, I get a postcard in the mail from them saying that I wasn't a government threat and that they could release the pension file to me once they find it.
- Today, I got a letter from them. They don't have it.
- So, now I'm officially Baltimore's problem. Yes, I said Baltimore. That's where they sent my request. Why, I have no idea. John never lived in Baltimore, never even had anything to do with Maryland. I had been told that if the main VA center didn't have a record you'd be sent to the VA records center closest to where the person died (which, for John would be the VA records center closest to Oakland, California) yet this doesn't seem to be the case.
- Oh, and even more troubling: The letter spelled his name "John Berge."
Monday, March 22, 2010
When Can I Get Off This Ride?!
So the never ending story of trying to locate John Berger's pension file has yet another new chapter. Here is the saga thus far: