A native of East Meadow, New York, Captain Palmeri enlisted in the Coast Guard in 1975 and attended Basic Training in Cape May, NJ. Following Boot Camp, he reported to his first operational unit at CG Station Montauk Point, NY, where he served as a Boatswains Mate 2nd Class and Coxswain on the 41 ft Utility Boat and 44 ft Motor Life Boat.
In late 1979, following a brief 8-month tour at the Coast Guard’s Brooklyn Supply Center and another 2-year tour at CG Station Montauk, he reported to Aviation Structural Mechanic “A” School in Elizabeth City, NC. Upon graduation in 1980, he reported to his first aviation unit at Air Station Cape Cod, MA, where he served as a flight mechanic on the HH-52A and HH-3F helicopters. As a 1st Class Aviation Structural Mechanic, he reported to his next unit at Air Station Savannah, GA. where he served from 1984-1986 as an HH-52A flight mechanic, aircrew instructor, Metal Shop supervisor, and Primary Quality Assurance Inspector.
Completing Officer Candidate School in 1987, he reported directly to Naval Flight Training in Pensacola, FL, for basic fixed wing and rotary wing flight training. Earning his wings in 1988, he was assigned to flying duties at Air Station Brooklyn, NY, where he flew the HH-65A helicopter on search and rescue missions throughout the New York metropolitan area, New Jersey, and Connecticut coastlines from 1988-1993. In 1993, he completed Maintenance Officer Training and was subsequently assigned to Group/Air Station Corpus Christi, TX, as the HH-65 Maintenance Officer. While in Corpus Christi, he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Professional Aeronautics while attending night classes. In 1997, he was assigned to Group/Air Station Humboldt Bay, CA, and served as the Aeronautical Engineering Officer. In 2000, following a three-year tour in Humboldt Bay, he was assigned to Group/Air Station Atlantic City, NJ, as the Aeronautical Engineering Officer in support of 6 HH-65B helicopters and 1 Air Facility located on Long Island, NY. In 2003, he was assigned to the Aircraft Repair and Supply Center in Elizabeth City, NC, as the ARSC Deepwater Division Chief. A year later, he was assigned as the HH-65 Product Line Manager at ARSC and was responsible for the initial prototype and production of the newly re-engined HH-65C model aircraft. From 2005-2007, he served as ARSC’s Executive Officer and in 2007, was assigned as Commanding Officer of Air Station Los Angeles from 2007-2009. In the summer of 2009, Captain Palmeri served as the Incident Management Branch Chief for the Thirteenth Coast Guard District in Seattle, Washington.
Captain Palmeri has accumulated over 6,000 hours in the H-65 aircraft and obtained his Airline Transport Pilot designation in June of 2003. His personal military awards include two Meritorious Service Medals, the Air Medal, and three CG Commendation Medals. Captain Palmeri’s family includes Marjorie, his wife of 32 years, and 2 brothers, John and Gary.
Commander Chris Andres