Hugh L. PALMER (1936 - 2016)

10 entries
  • - Marilyn Tucker
  • "Recently worked with Hugh on a metal building construction..."
    - John Landon
  • " To Cecelia & the Palmer Family, My sincere condolences..."
    - Dan Selby
  • "I knew and respected Hugh as an older brother to Walla Pat..."
    - Orville Wright
  • "Hugh was kind and compassionate and a gentleman. I was..."
    - Marilyn Tucker
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of Dunedin, passed away Wednesday, April 6, 2016. He was 80. Born Feb. 1, 1936 in Lebanon, OH, Hugh grew up in Middletown, OH. In 1954, he was appointed to the United States Naval Academy and, upon graduation, married his high school sweetheart, the former Patricia Burns. They were married for 52 years until her death in 2010.

To honor his military obligation, Hugh became an aviator and served on several aircraft carriers including the USS Randolph and the USS Independence. He was one of the first pilots assigned to the USS Enterprise which he said was "the biggest excitement in the world of aviation" at the time. He was aboard the Enterprise when it participated in the tense military blockade of Cuba in October 1962, along with shipmates U.S. Sen. John McCain and astronaut Bruce McCandless.

After 14 years of service, Hugh was honorably discharged. He moved his young family to Middletown and began a new career in the steel industry with Armco Steel. In 1980, the family relocated to Fort Myers where he was employed by Dean Steel Buildings. He would eventually strike out on his own to become a Class A general contractor in Dunedin. Never one to be idle, he worked up until his death.

Hugh was passionate about civic service and charitable causes. He was president of the Board of Education for the Madison (Township) Local School District, past president of the Middletown United Way and a past president of the Madison Lions club. Hugh was a founding member of the Madison Sports Club in West Middletown. In 1971, under the auspices of the Madison Lions led by Norman Sampson, Hugh and others began the effort to bring a knothole ball program to Madison Township. They are still playing 45 years later.

Hugh loved fishing and was a member of the Clearwater Bass Club. He worshipped at Emmanuel Community Church and spent many hours documenting the Palmer genealogical history. The family now possesses a rich archive thanks to his efforts.

Survivors include three sons, Scott, of Tampa, Gregory (Kim), of Miami Shores and Christopher (Suzanne) of St. Petersburg; three grandchildren, Taylor, Thomas and Patrick; two brothers, retired Col. Warren (Nancy) Palmer, of Plymouth, MI, and Pat (Diana) Palmer, of Cheswick, PA; a sister, Cecelia McLane, of Redmond, OR; a sister and brother-in-law, Carol Burns McAdow and Samuel J. McAdow of Dublin, OH; a sister-in-law, Linda Palmer, of Cincinnati, and brother-in-law, Thomas Redding of Lima, OH. He was preceded in death by a brother, Michael Palmer; a sister, Nancy Palmer Redding; and brothers-in-law, Douglas McLane and Robert S. Burns.

A remembrance service will be held at 11 am Saturday, April 16, at Emmanuel Community Church in Palm Harbor. In lieu of flowers, consider a donation to the Florida Gulf Coast chapter of the at


Published in the Tampa Bay Times on Apr. 10, 2016
Arrangements under the direction of:
Sylvan Abbey - Funeral Home
2853 SUNSET POINT RD | Clearwater, FL 33759 | (727) 796-1992
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