USS UTAH  BB-31 / AG-16

The Forgotten Ship of Pearl Harbor

Captain John Roy Palmer

USNA Grad 1913

​Commanding Officer USS Utah:  June 16, 1940 to June 30, 1941

John Roy Palmer was born in Ethlyn, Missouri on March 30, 1889. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1913 and was later a pistol instructor at Annapolis. Palmer was a gunnery officer on the USS New York before taking command of the USS Utah in 1940. He was known as "Boss" and retired from the Navy with the rank of Commodore in 1947. After retirement, Palmer and his wife, Emma Reed Palmer, bought a small farm east of Annapolis where he lived until his death on September 29, 1962. Palmer died while attending a Navy / William and Mary football game in Annapolis.