Private Scott Palmer

It is with deep regret the Australian Defence Force announces the death of Private (Pte) Scott Travis Palmer during operations in Afghanistan.

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.

Twenty-seven-year-old Pte Palmer was from the Sydney-based 2nd Commando Regiment.

Private Palmer leaves behind his loving parents and brother, who are currently receiving support from Defence.

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 Afghanistan Campaign Medal 
  • the NATO ISAF Medal 
  • the Returned from Active Service Badge.

During Private Scott Travis Palmer's service in the Australian Army, he deployed on the following operations:

  • Operation Citadel (East Timor): February – May 2003
  • Operation Catalyst (Middle East): May – November 2005
  • Operation Astute (East Timor): March – June 2007
  • Operation Slipper (Afghanistan): November 2007 – June 2008
  • Operation Slipper (Afghanistan): March – July 2009
  • Operation Slipper (Afghanistan): February – June 2010.

Statements and tributes

Mr Ray and Mrs Pam Palmer, Private Palmer's parents

The following statement is being released at the request of Ray and Pam Palmer, the parents of Private Scott Palmer, who was tragically killed on operational service with the Special Operations Task Group in Afghanistan, on Monday, 21 June 2010.

We are on the eve of receiving our son, Scott, home from Afghanistan where he had been on operational duty in the service of the nation when he died. Scott was a proud and devoted soldier who loved serving with his mates of the 2nd Commando Regiment, and previously with 5th/7th Royal Australian Regiment. Serving in the Army and being a Commando had been his long held dream. True to his nature, he lived his dream with distinction.

While our grieving has just begun, we lovingly remember the man whom Scott was: a devoted son and brother to his family; a best friend to his father, Ray, and his brother, Adam; always loyal to his mates. His connection to the University Pirates Rugby Club characterised how dearly he valued his mates, maintaining great friends from that club long after he had moved on. To us all Scott was a larrikin who made us laugh, he had mischief in his smile, love in his heart, and was completely generous regardless of circumstance.

We have been overwhelmed by the expressions of support from the Katherine community, his mates in the Army, his friends from the Pirates and loyal friends from around the country. As you have kept us in your hearts, you are in ours. Your thoughts and wishes steel us with the knowledge that we do not bear the burden of this grief alone.

We would like to thank the Australian Defence Force for their efforts to support us during this traumatic time. We would like to personally thank the Chief of Army, Lieutenant General Ken Gillespie, Special Operations Commander Australia, Major General Tim McOwan, Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, for his reassuring words and being gracious with his time. We would also thank the 2nd Commando Regiment and the Defence Community Organisation for all of the support they have given us during our time of need. We appreciate the effort that all parties are making, including members of the media, to respect our privacy during this time.

Our beloved son is coming home. He can now rest in peace.