I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.
Finding a lost pension/retirement plan can definitely be done. The fact that the SSA has told you that the benefits are there is a good sign, and indicative of the fact that they really do exist.
Finding your specific pension is not as easy as doing a simple web search, and while you can retain an investigator to do this for you, if you are patient, and have some time, you can do it yourself as well.
Sometimes, people like you are able to locate their pension plan from a no-longer existing employer, through the pension Benefit Guarantee Association---part of the US Government. Here is a link to their site:
It is even possible that they have been looking for you. You may place your name into a database here, and see if the government has been looking for you relating to pension benefits:
Here is a link to a terrific article on finding the lost pension program that you know is out there:
I wish you success in finding the plan and getting your money.
You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.
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I wish you and yours the best in 2016,