Chesterton Tribune

Service set for Pastor Kevin Palmer

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Pastor Kevin R. Palmer of Chesterton died Saturday, Oct.16 at Porter Hospital, Valparaiso. He was 38.

He was born May 24, 1972 in Springfield, Ill. to Wallace R. and Joann M. (Borgelt) Palmer. On June 5, 1999, in Hopwood, Pa., he married his high school sweetheart, Jill A. Vandermer, who survives in Chesterton.

Also surviving are his mother of O’Fallon, Mo.; children Abigail L., Sophia M. and Nathanael R. Palmer, all of Chesterton; grandmothers Marie Borgelt of St. Charles, Mo., and Mildred Wilson (husband John) of New Bloomfield, Mo.; sister Lisa McGinnis (Timothy) of St. Louis, Mo.; and niece and nephews Peyton and Keegan McGinnis and Mason Vandermer.

He was preceded in death by his father.

Kevin was the pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church for the past six years. He had graduated from Valparaiso University in 1994 with a BA in history.

He taught for several years at schools in Illinois and New York. He then attended Concordia Seminary in St. Louis and earned his Master of Divinity. He completed his Vicarage at Zion Lutheran Church in Brighton, Colo. He assumed his first calling at Lake George Lutheran Chapel in Fremont, Ind., then came to Immanuel Lutheran Church in 2004, where he currently presided.

Kevin was an avid reader, history buff, and sports fan, always rooting for the Steelers, Penguins and St. Louis Cardinals. He loved classical music. He was a board member of Michigan City Meals on Wheels and the Admissions Board for the Lutheran Deaconess Association. He will be fondly remembered as a loving family man. His gentle way will be etched in the memory of all he knew.

The funeral will be held Thursday, Oct. 21 at 10 a.m. at Immanuel Lutheran Church with Rev. John Albers officiating. Visitation will be Wednesday from 4 to 8 p.m. at the church. Carlisle Funeral Home, 613 Washington St., Michigan City, is handling the arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to his children’s education trust fund. Checks may be made out to “Kevin Palmer Children’s Fund.” To leave private or public condolences, visit


Posted 10/19/2010