BATH — Russell A. Palmer, of South Harpswell Maine, passed away Thursday night at Hill House in Bath at the age of 81.

He was born February 21, 1936 in West Harpswell to Alfred and Mildred (nee Rogers) Palmer and grew up there working at Palmer’s general store. He had many great memories playing baseball in Harpswell and for Brunswick High, earning the nickname “Slippery” for his pitching from life-long friend Ronnie LeClair, and later in life he could always be found watching the Red Sox day or night.

A man of many talents, Russ worked as a carpenter, plumber, and electrician before starting a career with AT&T, first with circuit board production and then as an account manager with Raytheon. After retiring, he continued to work for many years as co-owner of Gediman’s Appliance in Bath with his former wife, Jayne Palmer. Throughout, Russ was a determined and intuitive worker who could build, fix, improve or reimagine just about any problem or project. No task was beyond him, from building a seawall on Harpswell ledges to customizing a Chevy van for a family cross country trip.

When starting a family, he built his first house in Harpswell, and a few years later rebuilt a burned out cottage on Potts Point into a beautiful home where family and friends have gathered for countless years and many great memories. Like a good Mainer, he would fix and reuse everything – like the charred timbers from the original cottage still supporting his beloved house, and old nails he would straighten and reuse. As a teenager he helped tear down the old Merriconeag House on Potts Point and then managed to reclaim and reuse its doors over twenty years later. He used that same commitment to doing a job, doing it right and seeing it through to the end to earn a degree from Northeastern in 1985 while working full time for AT&T.

He is survived by his three sons Stephen Palmer and wife Karla of Watertown, CT, Stewart Palmer and wife Elizabeth of Brunswick, ME, David Palmer of Groton, MA, his former wife Jayne of Bath, ME, his sister Betty Douglas, Harpswell, ME, sisters-in-law Patricia Davis of Falmouth, MA and Irene Palmer of Bath, ME, eight grandchildren, Ellie, Kendra, Lexi, Henry, Calvin, Elena, Eli, and Lisi, and countless nieces and nephews. The family thanks the staff at Hill House for their personal and professional care over his extended stay there.

Russ will be remembered by many. He had a way of being able to talk to anyone and make them feel liked and welcome, and Russ seemed to run into a friend every place he went. He has left so much to his family in memories, life lessons, and how to tackle any job with determination and a sense of humor. The best way to remember all the joy Russ brought us is to celebrate his life at the place he built into our family’s special home. Family and friends will gather in the the spring when the weather is warm and the sun is shining on the deck at the cottage to share our stories of Russ and his life.

Memorial contributions in Russell’s name may be made to Harpswell Neck Fire and Rescue, P.O. Box 8, Harpswell, Maine 04079. Memories and condolences can be shared at