Benjamin Andreas Geisert, 89, Washington, passed away Tuesday, April 1, 2014, at The Homestead at Hickory View, Washington.|
Ben A., son of the late Ben F. Geisert and wife Cora V., nee Schultze, was born Feb. 12, 1925, in Washington. He was educated at Washington Public Elementary and Washington High School, and attended the University of Missouri for two years. He was united in marriage to Janet Mae Stumpe in May 1945. Following her death in 1974, he married Dorothy A. Palisch, nee Mauntel, June 12, 1981.
Ben A., who was a farmer, banker and community volunteer, devoted his life to his family and education. He served on the South Point R-4 and Washington School District Boards of Education for 20 years, the last five serving as board president. During these years, the rural districts surrounding Washington merged into the Washington District, which substantially expanded its facilities and geographic boundaries. He was an active member of the Washington Jaycees, Franklin County Farm Bureau, Washington Historical Society, Washington Rotary Club and East Central College Foundation. He was a supporter of many philanthropic endeavors, including the Emmaus Home, WINGS (Washington's Investment in Great Schools) and the Geisert Family Scholarship at the University of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources. He ran a successful, innovative swine and crop production operation. In addition, from 1971 to 1990, Ben A. utilized his business acumen to help direct and lead Mercantile Bank of Franklin County by serving on its board of directors, and 10 years as its board chairman.
Ben A. had a competitive spirit, enjoying basketball in high school and Ping-Pong, tennis, golf and card playing during his adult years. His children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were honored by his presence at many of their sports, cultural and educational events. He enjoyed traveling and doing the daily word jumble and crossword puzzle. Ben A.'s zest for life, friendliness, genuine interest in others and welcoming spirit endeared him to many. He will be missed by his family and community.
Ben A. is survived by four children, Andrew B. "Andy" Geisert and wife Diane, St. Clair, D. John Geisert and wife Karen, Washington, Nell Ann Redhage and husband Paul, Labadie, and Jo Ellen Grace and husband Tim, Columbia; four stepchildren, Lynne Unnerstall and husband Tim, Washington, Steve Palisch and wife Darlene, Cadet, Bob Palisch and wife Jane, Glendale, and John Palisch and wife Cynthia, Collinsville, Ill.; two sisters, Roberta J. Waldram, Casper, Wyo., and Cora Elizabeth "Betty" Rademaker, Washington; one brother, James F. Geisert and wife Lyndia, Washington; nine grandchildren; six step-grandchildren; 15 great- grandchildren; three step-great-grandchildren; nieces; nephews; great-nieces and -nephews; cousins; and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his wives, Janet Mae Geisert and Dorothy A. Geisert; parents, Ben F. and Cora V. Geisert; one sister, Geraldine A. "Gerry" Wyatt, Poplar Bluff; and five brothers-in-law.
Visitation was held from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, April 4, at Miller Funeral Home, Washington.
A celebration of life took place at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 5, at the funeral home.
Memorials may be given to the Geisert Family Scholarship at the University of Missouri or WINGS, in care of Miller Funeral Home.
The Geisert family was served by Miller Funeral Home, Washington.
Published in The Missourian on Apr. 9, 2014