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Palmar EOD Preliminary Schoolhouse dedicated
LaDeane Palmar, spouse of Tech. Sgt. Rick Palmar, speaks to the audience during the "Palmar EOD Preliminary Schoolhouse" dedication ceremony at bldg 1719 on Sheppard training annex Oct. 26, 2012. The schoolhouse was renamed in memory of Tech. Sgt. Palmar, an EOD instructor who passed away in December, 2009. (U.S. Air Force photo/Frank Carter)
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Palmar EOD Preliminary Schoolhouse dedicated

Posted 10/26/2012   Updated 10/26/2012 Email story   Print story


by Dan Hawkins
82nd Training Wing Public Affairs

10/26/2012 - SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- Airmen attending the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) preliminary course at Sheppard will always have a trusted mentor to look to for inspiration as they take their first steps toward becoming part of the EOD community.

The 366th Training Squadron's Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) preliminary course schoolhouse was dedicated to the memory of Tech. Sgt. Rick Palmar Oct. 26 in a ceremony in front of Sheppard members, family and friends.

Palmar, who entered the Air Force in 1997, passed away while on active-duty in December, 2009. At the time of his passing, he was assigned as an instructor at Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal (NAVSCOLEOD), part of the 366th TRS Detachment 3, located at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

Building 1719, located at the Sheppard training annex, was renamed "The Palmar EOD Preliminary Schoolhouse" during the ceremony.

During his remarks to the family, Brig. Gen. Michael Fantini, 82nd Training Wing commander and head of the official party, spoke about using Palmar's inspiration as another way to help execute the wing's mission of producing world-class EOD technicians on a daily basis.

"This is an opportunity for us to continue to utilize the Palmar family to execute the mission of the 82nd Training Wing and the United State Air Force," said the general. "This building will be used to train and inspire Airmen every day...embracing Rick's values of passion and professionalism."

Palmar's wife LaDeane, who attended the ceremony along with daughter Makayla, described the attributes that made her husband unique.

"Rick was a dedicated father, husband and EOD troop," Mrs. Palmer said. "He loved being in EOD...he was a great team leader and mentor. If it needed to get done, it would get done."

Mrs. Palmer also relayed how her husband found his true calling as an instructor.

"I remember when he got the assignment to be an instructor at NAVSCOLEOD, how nervous he was," she said. "It didn't take long to see Rick had found his true calling as an EOD instructor."

Tech. Sgt. Roger Hughes, 366th TRS EOD instructor who served with Palmar at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., served as the narrator for the ceremony. Hughes related stories on a personal level about the type of leader Palmar was.

"Ricky was loved and respected by his peers," he said. "It didn't matter whether it was a real-world operation or just training, he led by example and made sure safety was at the front."

At the end of the ceremony, Palmar's daughter released a balloon with a message for her father before a sign naming the school was unveiled by Lt. Col. James Beam, 366th TRS commander, and Mrs. Palmer.

Also in attendance at the ceremony were Palmar's sister Michelle, nephew Chris and cousin Leroy, along with LaDeane's parents Dan and Faye Gately.

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