Stanley G. Gesell, 92, of State College, died Friday, March 21, 2014, at the Inn at Brookline Village, State College.
Born on May 22, 1921, in Brookville, Indiana, he was the son of the late Henry and Nettie Heeb Gesell. He graduated from Brookville High School in 1939, and was a December 1942, graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with a major in Entomology.
He was drafted into the U.S. Army Air Corps in February of 1943 and was assigned to a medical unit where he specialized in the prevention of insect-borne diseases. The Army stationed him in several different locations. While stationed in Greensboro, North Carolina, he met the late Kathryn Waynick whom he married on August 30, 1947.
Following his release from the Army, Stanley accepted a job in Cooperative Extension with the Department of Entomology at the Pennsylvania State College, now Penn State University. During his years at the University, he was responsible for developing and conducting numerous insect-pest management programs for the protection of agronomic crops. During the early 1960’s, he took a sabbatical and returned to Purdue University to earn his Masters Degree in Entomology, on January 18, 1964.
Stanley was a registered professional entomologist and a member of the Pennsylvania Entomological Society. He also served as president of the Eastern Branch of the Entomological Society of America.
On June 30, 1984, he retired as professor emeritus of entomology extension after 38 years of service. Following retirement, he preformed volunteer work at the Centre Community Hospital (now Mount Nittany Medical Center). As a patient’s advocate, he assisted patients with the interpretation and completion of their paperwork. He joined the State College Kiwanis in 1982 and was a loyal member for 31 years. He participated in all Kiwanis projects and served as the house manager for many years. In 2013 he was awarded emeritus status upon his resignation due to deteriorating health.
He was a member of Saint Paul’s United Methodist Church for over 60 years where he served as an usher and as a communion steward. He was previously a member of the State College Benevolent and Protective Order of Elk (#1600) in the 1970’s.
He is survived by three sons, Thomas E. Gesell and his wife, Virginia, Richard W. Gesell and his wife, Lilly, all of State College, and by Craig E. Gesell and his wife, Ellen, of Sarasota, Florida; one sister, Martha Gesell Bergman of Brookville, Indiana; two grandchildren, Kurt Gesell of Pittsburgh and Marissa Gesell of Washington, DC; three step-grandchildren, Jeremiah Hyslop of Evergreen, CO, Reid Withrow of Sarasota, FL, and Lauren Withrow of Tampa, FL. In addition to his parents and wife of 56 years, he was preceded in death by three brothers, Alfred H., Aaron N. and Lurton E. Gesell, and one sister, Nellie Gesell Atwell.
Visitation will be from 6 until 8 p.m., on Monday, March 24, 2014, at Koch Funeral Home, 2401 South Atherton Street, State College.
Memorial service will be at 1 p.m., on Tuesday, March 25, 2014, at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, 250 East College Avenue, State College, with the Reverend G. Edwin Zeiders officiating.
Burial will be in Centre County Memorial Park.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, 250 East College Avenue, State College, PA 16801 or to the Special Olympics, 177 Creekside Drive, State College, PA 16801.
Arrangements are under the care of Koch Funeral Home. Online condolences and signing of the guest book may be entered at www.kochfuneralhome.com.