The story of Fred Minnick and his untimely draft notice has many people scratching their heads this week after a Pennsylvania woman told media outlets that her father had just received notification of joining the army to fulfill his military service, only the recipient has died and the call came 102 years too late.
The octogenarian Martha Weaver told The Derrick Wednesday that the Selective Service System conscription arrived Saturday to Rickland Township, about 90 kilometers (60 miles) north of Pittsburgh.
Her father's name was Fred Minnick and notification, which came with the typo "Minick," warns that failure is "punishable by fine and imprisonment."
Her father was born on June 12, 1894 and would have turned 18 in 1912 which would have made him eligible for the draft in 1912. Weaver suspected the delay was because the form contains another mistake, as it gives her father's birth year as 1994 although Minnick died on April 20, 1992.
The Selective Service System is an independent agency of the United States government that maintains information on those potentially subject to military conscription. Most male U.S. citizens and male immigrant non-citizens between the ages of 18 and 25 are required by law to have registered within 30 days of their 18th birthdays.
The Selective Service Act was passed by the 65th United States Congress on May 18, 1917 creating the Selective Service System. The Act gave the President the power to conscript men for military service. All males aged 21 to 30 were required to register for military service for a service period of 12 months.
Under current law, all male U.S. citizens are required to register with Selective Service within 30 days of their 18th birthday. In addition, non-U.S.-citizen males between the ages of 18 and 25 (inclusive) living in the United States must register. Furthermore, the Selective Service System wants you to know that the requirement to register for the draft did not go away with the end of the Vietnam War.
Since there is no draft currently in effect, and men are not being classified for service, disabled men, clergymen, and men who believe themselves to be conscientiously opposed to war must also register.