Two Brothers Killed on the USS Oklahoma are Finally Accounted For

The DPAA has announced that two US Navy brothers, Seaman 2nd Class Calvin H. Palmer and Seaman 2nd Class Wilferd D. Palmer, who were killed during the attack on the USS Oklahoma in Pearl Harbour on December 7th, 1941, were finally accounted for on March 19, 2019.

On December 7, 1941, Japanese carrier-based aircraft launched a surprise attack on the U.S. Navy base and ships at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The Nevada-class battleship USS Oklahoma (BB-37) was struck by multiple torpedoes within minutes and capsized. The captain of the USS Oklahoma ordered the crew to abandon ship over the starboard side. Those who escaped swam to the battleship USS Maryland (BB-46), or manned smaller boats and helped pull the wounded out of the water. Rescuers saved thirty-two sailors by cutting holes into the Oklahoma’s side. More than 450 sailors and Marines aboard the USS Oklahoma perished in the attack.

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Seaman Second Class Wilfred Dewey Palmer and his brother, Harry Palmer, both joining the U.S. Navy in North Dakota, were serving aboard the Oklahoma at the time of the Pearl Harbor attack and were among those lost with the ship.

Their remains could not be identified following the incident and both were unaccounted-for until March 19, 2019 after DNA confirmation. Both brothers are memorialized on the Courts of the Missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. A rosette will be placed next to their names to indicate they have been accounted for.