2nd Commando Regiment
Private Palmer was serving with the Special Operations Task Group when he tragically lost his life in a helicopter crash, on Monday 21 June 2010 during operations in Afghanistan.
Twenty-seven-year-old Pte Palmer was from the Sydney based 2nd Commando Regiment.
Private Palmer enlisted in the Australian Army in 2001. Private Palmer successfully undertook Commando Selection and Training in 2006 and joined the then 4th Battalion Royal Australian Regiment (Commando) in November 2006. This was his third tour to Afghanistan and was serving with the Special Operations Task Group (SOTG). Private Palmer has seen operational service in East Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan. His professionalism was of the highest order and he excelled at everything he did. Private Palmer loved his job and working alongside his mates.
Private Palmer was awarded the Australian Active Service Medal with clasps IRAQ, East Timor and International Coalition Against Terrorism (ICAT), the IRAQ Campaign Medal, the Australian Defence Medal, the Australian Service Medal with clasp Timor – Leste, the Australian Operational Service Medal – Border Protection, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, and the NATO ISAF Medal. Private Palmer was also awarded the Returned from Active Service Badge from a previous deployment.
During Private Scott Travis Palmer’s service in the Australian Army, he deployed on the following Operations;
- Operation Citadel (East Timor) – Feb – May 2003
- Operation Catalyst (Middle East) – May – Nov 2005
- Operation Astute (East Timor) – Mar-Jun 2007
- Operation Slipper (Afghanistan) – Nov 2007 – Jun 2008, Mar – Jul 2009 and Feb – Jun 2010. (Meritorious Unit Citation)
On the 24th of December 1982, a young boy came into the world in a hospital in Ipswich. From the humble beginnings as a Queenslander, he grew to be hero for his country. Perhaps it was this inbuilt mighty Maroon never say die, give it all attitude that drove Scotty to go hard and achieve so much. Back then none of us could have appreciated the truly great gift we had been given.
During his early years Scott would sit back and let his brother Adam do all the talking. I suppose this was his way of staying out of trouble. Once he learnt to speak at about the age of 4 there was no stopping him. He was a competitive rascal from the early days always pushing the limits and fighting his brother for the football, the bike and getting involved in anything that was going around.
Scott was truly a product of his parents Ray and Pam. From his father Ray he developed his steely resolve and the never-ending questioning of the stupidity of rules which did not make sense, and from his mother Pam his compassion, pleasant demeanor and wonderful smile.
As a youngster he was always a little different. Not as we know him today. A touch overweight and a little shy around strangers. There were many experiences that shaped Scott into the fine young man that he grew into. Being the younger of two boys was always trying to get one up on his brother Adam.
His younger years were also shaped by the remote wilderness of the Northern territory and the presence of the Military although the wrong color, obviously there was not enough excitement to cause him to join the Air force like his father. Perhaps the combination of these factors influenced his decision to join the army. He was always looking for adventure and opportunity.
No challenge was too great or obstacle too large. This was made quite obvious to us all with one-liners such as “Pain is weakness leaving the body” I am sure he used this many times to push himself to the limit and beyond in his pursuits. He was often referred to as a Machine.
Through his life, he developed a unique sense of humility and a healthy respect for those around him. This ensured his relationship with Ray and Pam grew stronger as the years progressed despite the ordeals and personal challenges they faced. In the words of one of his mates “Scotty has an infectious way of turning a shitty situation into something that was bearable” As only Scotty could.
One of the greatest virtues of Scotty was his commitment to his family. He regularly gave life advice to his cousins and looked out for them. Just ask Kate and Sammy. In the midst of war zones, he would take time to ring his Mum. He was still dependent on her to buy his clothes and pay his bills. When he was home, and his mates were away he would spend time with their partners going to the movies or just hanging out and keeping them company.
With little else to do he developed a passion for Rugby. Although not the fittest and leanest player, he soon earned a reputation as a formidable opponent, which he carried through the rest of his life. Affectionately known to by his teammates as SLUGGER , he etched out his own place in history being part of premiership winning teams and going on to represent his state with a trip to warm sunny Melbourne. He and his brother Adam were the first brothers to represent the Territory in the same team. A far cry from the rocky playing fields of Katherine! He was offered an opportunity to be part of the REDS development squad however chose to finish Grade 12.
On one hand he was strong, tough and confident which was exemplified by the muscle car and the big boy’s toys. The TV in his unit was as massive and you needed to scan across the screen when watching it. It was good however when having a BBQ in the courtyard watching the football with the esky close by. It was just like being at the game with out the hassle of lining up at the toilets or the bar. A simple alternative just like Scotty liked it. Not quite sure how he would have handled seeing his face on the big screen at Wednesday’s final state of origin match. On the other, the caring compassionate nature exemplified by his love of home and away and his Video collection of soapies and his ever so charming way with the girls. This even extended to letting dolly the kangaroo come in each night and watch Home and away with him. He had a love of country Music.
He would do anything to help you out if he could and would be overly appreciative if you helped him out. Always wanting to pay you back with interest! Buying his dream Holden went against his better judgement as Ford fan was truly a unique experience. Whenever I had spent a cent in the process the money was in the bank before I knew it. This was his nature through and through. Pay your own way and help others.
Scotty was no saint and when he would let his hair down and party, he would certainly have a good time. I remember on one occasion Scott came to visit and three days later with no sleep he rang from the airport to let me know that his mate would drop my house keys back as he was on his way back to Sydney.
The Look in his eyes and the unique Scotty Smile on his face could not be hidden by the clothes he wore or the mountainous facial hair he grew or the trendy sunnies.
Our memories of you are vivid and varied. You have touched each and every one of us in your own unique way. We will always remember you in our hearts, not only as a hero and soldier but as a loving brother cousin nephew son and mate.
Your larrikin demeanor and infectious smile will be with us forever. Thanking for sharing your life with us. You are dearly missed by us all.
God Bless you, Scott. It is time for you to rest. We know in our hearts that you will be looking over us forever.
We miss you MATE.