William Porter “Bill” Palmer, passed away peacefully at home on August 20, 2019 after a short illness.
He was born January 24, 1928 in Charleston, WV, son of the late Noyes Franklin Palmer and Frances Emma Porter Palmer. He grew up in Charleston’s East End where he became a skilled ice skater and hockey player. He attended Charleston High School where he met his wife of 69 years, Leola Lindberg Palmer, whom he shared a lifetime of love and devotion. While at Charleston High School he was a state champion in high hurdles. He attended the University of Virginia and was a member of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. He left college after his father died to manage the family business, Palmer’s Shoe Store. With his retirement, the 98 year old family business closed its doors on Capitol Street.
Bill remained a strong advocate of downtown Charleston throughout his life, serving on the Architectural Review Committee of Charleston’s Urban Renewal Authority. He was a member of Charleston Rotary Club and attended the Richwood Rotary Club meetings. He was also a member of a “well-known” downtown coffee group for over 70 years. Bill was a longtime member of First Presbyterian Church in Charleston.
His many and varied interests reflected his love of nature and the outdoors. Bill and his family spent many weekends at the camp he built in Nicholas County; fishing, hiking, hunting and appreciating the natural beauty of West Virginia.
Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by his sister, Nancy Roberts; a brother, Noyes Palmer; as well as his granddaughter, Margaret Palmer Shaffer and daughter-in-law, Ursula Gumienny Palmer.
Bill is survived by his wife of 69 years, Leola Lindberg Palmer, of Charleston, WV; son, William Palmer of Charlottesville, VA; daughters, Margaret (Alan Johnston) Palmer of Charleston, WV; and Sarah (Chip) Shaffer of Madison, WV. He was the beloved “Granddaddy” to eight grandchildren and one great-granddaughter: Noyes Palmer (Alexandra), Ann Palmer (Wayne Margolies), Gus Shaffer, Carl Shaffer (Lauren), Will Shaffer, Bobby Johnston, Taylor Johnston, and Anna Johnston.
Memorial visitation will be held from 1-3 pm, Saturday. August 24, 2019 at Barlow Bonsall Funeral Home. Per his request the family will hold a private graveside service following the visitation.
In lieu of flowers donations may be sent to the Kanawha State Forest Foundation, where Bill and Leola enjoyed many walks together. Kanawha State Forest Foundation, 7500 Kanawha State Forest Drive, Charleston, WV 25314 or First Presbyterian Church, 16 Leon Sullivan Way, Charleston, WV 25301.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.barlowbonsall.com
Barlow Bonsall Funeral Home, Charleston has been entrusted with the arrangements.