Did people who were in the Army during World War II still have to register for the draft?

+6 votes

I was thrilled to find that a profile I was about to add is already here.  I plan to contact the manager (granddaughter of the profile subject) to let her know that she now has several generations more family discovered, as well as a lot of details about her grandfather.  I just added all the sources for him that I found (but will await her permission to improve his biography), but there is something strange looking about his military records:

  • The 1940 census shows him living on a military base, with occupation "soldier, US Army"
  • In 1945 he registered for the World War II draft
  • He has a BIRLS record that shows service dates (in the Air Force) as from September 9, 1948 to March 31, 1960.
  • His page at Find a Grave indicates:

               MSGT US AIR FORCE

               WORLD WAR II KOREA

If he was released from the Army prior to 1945, would he have still been required to register for the draft?  If he served during WW II, then I would think that he would have still been in the Army in 1945, when he registered for the draft, which makes absolutely no sense to me.  Also, he was from Alabama and was on a base in Alabama in 1940, but was living in Florida when he was married in 1942.  This leads me to infer that he was definitely in the military then, and stationed in Florida. 

(note - citations and transcriptions of all records referenced above are on his profile)

WikiTree profile: Charles Reynolds
in Genealogy Help by Gaile Connolly G2G6 Pilot (950k points)
edited by Ellen Smith
I believe that everyone had to register for the draft if they didn't meet very limited exceptions, but my knowledge is patchwork. I don't think being previously part of the army would count as an exception.

3 Answers

+6 votes
Best answer
The WWII Draft Registration was a requirement for all Men between the ages of 21-45.

I've even seen Draft Registrations accomplished by Individuals both upon their Voluntary Enlistment and even after they had completed their tour of duty (because they were already enlisted & serving when the draft became a requirement).

~Brian Kerr
by Anonymous Kerr G2G6 Pilot (310k points)
selected by Anonymous Kerr
+2 votes
The United States Air Force was established in 1947. So, if he was previously in the Army, he would have mustered out of the Army and then joined the Air Force. Maybe there was a lag between the two and he had to register for the draft at that time. I have heard of this process of leaving one branch and joining another and there is a severance from the one before being accepted in the other.
by Virginia Fields G2G6 Pilot (890k points)
Virginia, in this case there was no Air Force until after World War II.  He could have been in the Army Air Corps at first, then automatically have been absorbed into the Air Force when it was formed.

Part of my problem is that I didn't find an enlistment record for when he joined the Army, nor did I find any discharge records, so I don't know if his service was continuous.  I suspect it was not continuous because the BIRLS record shows his enlistment date as 1948 and his service branch as Air Force.  Even in this case, though, his BIRLS record should be showing the dates of his Army service.
+1 vote
I believe the answer is Yes. My Father was AAC in the CBI Theater. He'd enlisted in January of 1941, served until the end of the War and Discharged... but also had to register for the 'draft' in 1946.
by James Washington G2G Crew (610 points)
My father enlisted as his number was called in the draft and it was an early number.  He knew he was going to get drafted and lose a first choice assignment. Ha! ha! He joined the Army Air Corps and was assigned to Jimmy Doolittle and his N. African Army.

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