Montville — David C. Palmer, age 82, of Oakdale, passed away Jan. 22, 2023, at Backus Hospital surrounded by his family. David was born Dec. 3, 1940, in Buffalo, N.Y., to Glennford Palmer and Helen Sonntag (Palmer). He married the love of his life, Wanda (Urh) Palmer, on June 11, 1960.
David left school at the age of 16, and joined the U.S. Navy. During his long career in the Navy, he earned his GED and became a chief petty officer on the tugboats. He had the first all-female crew on the tugboats. His claim to fame in the Navy was taking off the front of an Admiral’s car with a tugboat because he was parked where he shouldn’t have been. After retiring from the Navy after 22 years of service, he worked a few jobs before joining Unit 3 Maintenance at Millstone Nuclear Power Station, where he retired in 1995. After retiring from Millstone, he worked for P & J Trucking Inc., L H Bond and Service Station Equipment Inc. David was a life member of Oakdale Volunteer Fire Department and had once held the position of lieutenant. He also briefly raced cars at the Waterford Speed Bowl until having to give it up for health reasons.
Anyone who knew him and was lucky enough to be considered a friend became a lifelong friend that he would do anything for as they would for him. If you needed him in the middle of the night, he was there always with no complaints and no questions asked. He loved his family like no other and would drop everything if he thought you needed him, even when you told him not to. He always encouraged his family that they could do anything they wanted as long as they put their mind to it and put the effort in. He took his great-grandsons fishing and to many WBNA games. The last few years, he spent a lot of time watching and playing with his princesses that he called his happy pills, including his four-legged princess.
David was predeceased by his parents, Glennford and Helen (Sonntag) Palmer; his brother Glenn Palmer; sister Joyce Cisco; the love of his life and wife Wanda (Urh) Palmer; and his son-in-love William Pearson. He is survived by his sister Karen Galde and her husband, Richard; daughter Carol Palmer; son Glenn Palmer and his fiancée, Penny; son Steven Palmer; daughter Joann Horton; daughter-inlaw Renea Wunderlin; grandchildren: Ashley Palmer, David Palmer, Kayla Palmer-Nobleza, Garrod Steet-Palmer, Jason Horton and his wife, Leoness, Trent Chabot-Palmer and Dylan Wunderlin and his wife, Brook; and his great-grandchildren: Logan, Isaias, Jayden, Aleighna, Layla, Sevanna and Daniel.
A Celebration of Life will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 4, at Oakdale Fire Department, 444 Chapel Hill Road, Oakdale. Donations may be made in David’s honor to a veteran’s charity of your choice.