How to locate a someone who is or was in the Navy

Active duty:

The Navy's World Wide Locator is a service established to find the present duty station of active duty personnel, and is for official business use only. Family members, active duty personnel and Navy retirees may also use this system. To do so, you must have the service member's full name, Social Security number, grade or rank, and, if possible, last known duty station.

Write to:

Navy World Wide Locator
Naval Personnel Command
5720 Integrity Drive
Millington, TN 38055-3120

Retirees and those who have left the Navy but are not retired:

The Navy does not keep track of anyone once they've left the Navy. Individuals may serve an initial obligation of a certain number of years and then be discharged, or they may remain for more than one tour and then be discharged, or they may remain until eligible to transfer to the Fleet Reserve or to retire. To locate retirees, limited service is available through the World Wide Locator (address above). Correspondence will be forwarded, if possible, to the retiree since individuals' addresses are not releasable by law under the Privacy Act. Also, many times the address is not known.

For those individuals who left the Navy prior to being eligible for retirement or transfer to the Fleet Reserve, there is no formal way of trying to locate them. You may try the last place they called home and see if there are any records with either that local government or in the local newspaper's files, or you may just place an advertisement in any of the many veterans' organizations magazines.

Reviewed: 02 September 2009