Flight Sergeant George Morris Geisel, the son of Edward Henry Geisel and May Geisel (nee Fortescue), was born at Dalby in Queensland on 7th September 1925. He was educated at the Dalby State School and then attended the Toowoomba Grammar School during the years 1939-1940 where he completed the Junior Public Certificate. He applied for aircrew training in the Royal Australian Air Force on 7th August 1943. At the time of his application he was unmarried, employed as a Shop Assistant in his father’s store and resided c/- Post Office Box 66, Dalby, Queensland. At the age of 20 years and 3 months he was enlisted into the Citizen Air Force of the R.A.A.F. at No. 3 Recruiting Centre in Brisbane on 3rd December 1943 after giving a commitment that he would serve for the duration of the war and an additional twelve months. His physical description was that he was 5 feet 10 inches in height and weighed 154 pounds. He had a medium complexion, blue eyes and light brown hair. He stated that he was of the Church of England religion.
Flight Sergeant George Geisel was allotted the service number of 440279 and he joined No. 3 Initial Training School at Kingaroy in Queensland on 4th December 1943 where he was trained in military discipline and the basics of military aviation. He joined No. 5 Elementary Flying Training School at Narromine in New South Wales on 2nd March 1944 where he received twelve weeks instruction on basic single-engined training aircraft. He joined No. 9 Elementary Flying Training School at Cunderdin in Western Australia on 21st June 1944. He joined No. 4 Service Flying Training School at Geraldton in Western Australia on 30th July 1944. He joined No. 6 Service Flying Training School at Mallala in South Australia on 18th December 1944. He was awarded the Pilot Qualification Badge and promoted to the rank of Temporary Sergeant on 13th January 1945.
Flight Sergeant George Geisel joined No. 1 Personnel Depot at the Exhibition Building in Melbourne on 12th February 1945. He joined the Aircrew Officer & N.C.O.’ School at Watsonia in Victoria on 18th February 1945. He rejoined No. 1 Personnel Depot on 17th March 1945. He completed a high altitude course during the period 1st May until 8th May 1945. He joined No. 6 Service Flying Training School at Mallala in South Australia on 16th May 1945. He was promoted to the rank of Temporary Flight Sergeant on 13th July 1945. He was transferred to the Flying Control School at R.A.A.F. Station Laverton on 14th December 1945. He successfully completed No. 3 Flying Control Course (Air Traffic Control) during the period 17th December 1945 until 11th January 1946. He joined No. 27 Operational Base Unit on 20th January 1946.
Flight Sergeant George Geisel was a passenger in a Norseman aircraft A71-4 that crashed in thickly wooded country about eight miles south of Iron Range in Queensland during a non-operational travel flight on 12th February 1946. A land party reached the crash site and found the three occupants killed. Their bodies were recovered and buried in the Townsville War Cemetery. At the time of his death, George Geisel was 20 years of age. For his service during World War 2, he had entitlement for the Pilot Qualification Badge and the War Medal, and the Australian Service Medal 1939/1945. George Geisel’s name is commemorated on Panel No. 115 at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra and locally on the Toowoomba Grammar School World War 2 Honour Board. His name is also commemorated on the Dalby War Memorial WW2 Honour Plaque.
The following obituary was published in the Dalby Herald on 22nd February 1946:
Very widespread and heart-felt sorrow was felt in Dalby and throughout the district this week at the announcement of the death of Flight Sergeant George Morris Geisel, R.A.A.F., son of Alderman and Mrs E.H. Geisel, of “Melrose”, Archibald Street, Dalby. Flight Sergeant Geisel, after a period of service extending over two years with the R.A.A.F., was one of three members of the Force who met their death in an accident with aircraft in Northern Queensland. Word of the disaster had reached his parents and relatives last Friday, and though it was realised for some days that chances of the members of the crew being found alive were remote, hopes were entertained, until the receipt of official word from the Air Board on Wednesday, that the three men, Flying Officer C.W. Law, of Blackall, Flight Sergeant J.B. Crawford, of Redcliffe, and Flight Sergeant C.M. Geisel, would be safe. Members of a R.A.A.F. search party reported on Wednesday that the three men had been found with the R.A.A.F. Norseman plane, which had crashed in wild country in Cape York Peninsula. They were dead in the wreckage of the plane. The scene of the crash was eight miles from Iron Range aerodrome.
Flight Sergeant Geisel was a native of Dalby, and was 20 years of age. He was the youngest child of Alderman and Mrs Geisel. He attended the Dalby State School and later was educated at the Toowoomba Grammar School. Upon reaching the age of 18 years he enlisted with the R.A.A.F., and entered its service early in 1944. He served in all parts of Australia, being stationed in each State at various times. In the service, as in childhood and at college, he was very popular and had the friendship of a very wide circle of friends. He was held in very high esteem in Dalby, and having worked for some time in his father’s store, was well-known by town and country people. He had a very cheery manner and a kind, gentle, disposition, being ever solicitous of the interest and welfare of others, and a particular sense of duty and devotion to his parents and members of his family, to whom general and very sincere sympathy has been extended.
Though Flight Sergeant Geisel’s death was not met on the actual field of battle the sacrifice of his life in the service of the R.A.A.F., marks him as another Dalby hero son to give his all in the service of his country. Both parents survive him together with one brother, Mr C.E. Geisel, of Dalby, and seven sisters. Mrs N. Barke, Mrs A. Stanley, and Mrs S. Keys of Brisbane, Mrs A. Coles, Mrs W. Knowles, and Misses Edna and Joan Geisel, of Dalby, to whom the profound sympathy of the community has been extended.
Toowoomba Grammar School archive records show that he enrolled as a boarder on 30th January 1939 and that he left the School on 29th November 1940 after passing nine Junior subjects. His parent was shown as Edward Henry Geisel, Dalby. Whilst at school he was a member of the 1939 First XV Rugby team.
Casualty Report (for a crew member of the same flight)