Wilfred Palmer was born on 22 June 1917, the son of son of Ernest George and Ethel Mary Palmer of Kenton, Middlesex. He was educated at Uppingham School, Rutland, joined the Royal Navy as a Special Entry Cadet on 1 January 1935 and trained in the cruiser HMS FROBISHER. Promoted to Midshipman on 1 January 1936 he was appointed to the battle cruiser HMS RENOWN followed by an appointment to the cruiser HMS AMPHION on 7 June 1936. He was promoted to Sub Lieutenant on 1 May 1938.
He was appointed to HMS DOLPHIN ‘for the Submarine Course’ on 24 April 1939 and, on completion, he was appointed to HMS OXLEY as Third Hand. After the outbreak of WWII HMS OXLEY was torpedoed and sunk whilst on patrol on 10 September 1939 by HMS TRITON after OXLEY strayed out of her area and failed to respond to challenges from TRITON.
Wilfred Palmer of 14, Antrim Mansions, Hampstead, London was unmarried and is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval War Memorial on Panel No. 33 Column No. 1