Robert John Palfrey was born either in Dartmouth, Devon or in Penarth, the son of William and Mary Jane Palfrey. He married Margaret Emma Bale. In 1911 Margaret was living at 19 Ivy Street, Penarth with their children Winifred, Gladys, Doris and Marcus. Robert is not recorded in the 1911 census – he was presumably at sea. He served in the Mercantile Marine as Cook and Steward aboard S.S. “Kilmaho” (Cardiff). Robert died on 17the May 1917 aged 49 or 52, when his ship was sunk by a torpedo. He is commemorated on Tower Hill Memorial.