Military service file Library and Archives Canada
Military Service Record of Captain Fred Pascal, Royal Canadian Artillery, of Montreal. Pascal died August 8, 1944 in Normandy, France. (Ellin Bessner/photo)

If your relative served in the Canadian forces during the Second World War, (or WWI) the Library and Archives Canada releases official service records for free (an abbreviated package). 

It’s fascinating to read them.

For WW1 files, they are all online here for free: WW1 FILES

For WW2 files, you can get files of those who were killed in action, digitized (although sometimes they only have about 60 pages, but not the entire file).

Start HERE: 

If you don’t find the person’s name, or you want their entire files–which could run one hundred pages sometimes, (and it is worth it)– then you have to apply for free for the whole file.

There is a form to fill out online.

Here is the online request form: 

Here is a link to read more, and here is the printed form, if you wish to mail it or fax it in.

Some noteworthy Second World War service files are already digitized and online, including some belonging to deceased Jewish personnel like Samuel Moses Hurwitz

If you would be happy with just an abbreviated version of WWII files, has partial files of the 44,000 personnel who were killed in WWll or died shortly after, of injuries. You can pay to subscribe, or ask your public library if they have it, for free. For example, Richmond Hill’s Public Library offers this service.

Watch my HOW TO VIDEO to do it yourself:

You can also contact me directly, and I will be glad to walk you through the process.