Richard J. Palmer, 89, of Franklin passes away Tuesday, October 11, 2016 after a period of declining health. He was born June 3, 1927 in Butler to Richard G. and Doris Meddiker Palmer.
Richard graduated from Butler high School in 1945 and then served his country in the U.S. Navy as a corpsman taking care of wounded soldiers returning home from World War II. He received an honorable discharge in December 1946.
He was a gifted musician, able to play the piano by ear, and was a member of several bands in the Butler and Pittsburgh area.
He earned his Bachelors and Master's degrees from the University of Pittsburgh and later completed his PhD at Columbia University in NYC. A language major, he began his career as a graduate assistant in Spanish and French at Pitt. He later worked for Gulf Oil in Caracas, Venezuela for eight years. Upon returning to the US, he was a Spanish professor at Columbia University and John Jay College of Criminal Justice in NYC. He then served as a professional interpreter for the Federal Court, Southern District of New York. He was an extremely talented linguist who could speak seven languages and was always striving to learn more. He was quite an intellectual and read major newspapers in several languages daily. He was also a contributor to many online blogs in several languages.
Upon his retirement he lived in Franklin during the summer and Isla Verde, Puerto Rico in winter, where he had visited many times while living in NYC and joined many of his dear long-time friends. He was known and loved for his quick wit and love of humor. He will be dearly missed by all who knew and loved him.
He is survived by his sister-in-law Aileen Palmer of Franklin, 6 nieces and nephews, Bruce Palmer (ConnieJo), Carol Santoyo (Stan), Deborah Law (Tim) all of Franklin, Leanne Darling (Scott) of Newburgh, IN, Dale Palmer, Lisa Ballerini (Massimo) of San Francisco, CA and several cousins.
Also surviving are 9 great nieces and nephews, Richard Palmer, Sarah Palmer of Pittsburgh, Julie Fowler (Nate), Korey Dunlap, Nathan Dunlap of Franklin, Nick Darling, Jared Darling of Newburgh, IN, Caterina Ballerini, Isabella Ballerini of San Francisco, CA and a great-great-niece Bethany Dunlap of Franklin.
In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by three brothers, Robert, Dale, and Donald Palmer and a great-nephew Scott Darling Jr.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Huff Funeral Home & Cremation Services. There will be no public visitation
Private family services will be held with burial in Franklin Cemetery.
Online condolences and sympathy cards may be sent to his family by visiting