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Erie County (PA) Genealogy

Military - Frank Drake Geiger, Jr.

Contributed by Barbara Root Seyler

This article was submitted for a Memorial Day 2004 feature (which was never published) by Barbara Root Seyler. It is being posted at this time. The subject of the article was born in Corry, and was presumed dead after being declared missing during WW II. Any comments or additional information should be sent directly to Barb Seyler.


Aviation Pilot First Class, World War II


Frank Drake Geiger,Jr. was born 8 November 1914 at Corry, Erie County, PA.  He was the son of Jeanne “Jane” May Cottrell and Frank Drake Geiger, Sr.

He first enlisted in the U. S. Navy as Apprentice Seaman at the Navy Recruiting Station, Buffalo, NY, on 13 November 1934.  He was to serve for a period of four years.  On 13 November 1938, he signed for an extended enlistment for a period of two years and on 12 November 1940 was discharged from the U. S. Navy with an Honorable Discharge.  During these years, he served on the U.S.S. Henderson, U.S.S. Saratoga, U.S.N.T.S. at Norfolk, VA and part of Patrol Squadrons 14 and 20.

Reenlisting on 13 November 1940, in the U. S. Navy as Aviation Machinist’s Mate First Class, while stationed at Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii, to serve for a period of four years.  He was retained at Patrol Squadron Twenty-Four.

Frank transferred several times during 1941, including Patrol Squadron Twenty-Five, Patrol Wing Two Flag Unit and to the Naval Air Station at Pensacola, Florida.

On 22 May 1942, Frank’s rating was changed to Aviation Pilot first class and he was transferred to the Naval Air Station, Seattle, Washington.  In June of that same year, he was on board the U.S.S. Vega, at Patrol Squadron Forty-One (Patrol Wing 4).

Frank was reported missing in action while on patrol duty on 28 June 1942.  He was engaged in active patrol over the Aleutian Islands when he failed to return to his base.  He was listed as presumed dead by the Secretary of the Navy on 29 September 1943.  Frank was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart, the American Defense and World War II Victory Medals.   His service and memory are marked on a plaque at the Honolulu Memorial at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Frank married Marion Elizabeth (Lynn) Steele.  They had no children.


This page was last updated on  Wednesday, January 12, 2005 .

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