Featured PieceObituariesThe Northern Westchester Examiner

Prominent Businessman William Geis, Jr. Dies at 93

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William W. Geis, Jr., a prominent local businessman in the automotive industry and a community philanthropist, died March 29, surrounded by his family. He was 93.

Geis, known to many as “Billy,” was born May 24, 1930 in the former Peekskill Hospital to Rose and William W. Geis, Sr. He graduated high school in 1947 from Shrub Oak School, where he played quarterback for the football team and second base for four years on the varsity baseball team. He went on to receive his AA degree in 1949 from Valley Forge Military Junior College. He furthered his education at Syracuse University and New York University, majoring in accounting.

In 1950, he joined his father at Shrub Oak Garage, which inspired him to launch his car dealership enterprises: AMC Geis Motors, Geis Buick, and finally Geis Auto Mall in 1967. Over the following decades, Geis Auto Mall grew to numerous dealerships throughout the Hudson Valley.

In 1951, Geis married Mary Della Hopkins, his beloved wife of 46 years. Together they raised two cherished daughters, Susan Lee and Deborah Ann, with whom he spoke every day throughout his life. Geis and his wife built a community with friends who were like family playing penny poker, bowling, and boating. Geis’ role as a devoted husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather was one he cherished deeply.

In honor of his late wife, Geis established the Mary Della Geis Specialty Care Unit at Hudson Valley Hospital, embodying their commitment to giving back to others.

Geis’ unwavering dedication to serving his community impacted numerous organizations, belonging to the Yorktown Elk Lodge BPOE 2324 and Yorktown Masonic Lodge 1054, and earning honors from the Peekskill Rotary Club, New York State Lions Club, Peekskill Elks Club, and the Hudson Valley Gateway Chamber of Commerce. He served on the Hudson Valley Hospital Foundation Board of Directors and was the Grand Marshall for their annual golf outing for decades. He was a Hudson Valley Hospital Center Corporate Honoree and received the Westchester County Community Service Award in 1992. He was recognized for his hiring commitment by the New York State Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities with its Employer of the Year Award and received the Chester A. Smith Award for civic achievement from the Field Library. He was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church of Shrub Oak, which played an integral role in his life.

In addition, he was chairman of Peekskill Savings Bank, trustee of Peoples Westchester Bank, a charter member of the 12th Man Club of the Army Football Team, and an honorary member of the Lakeland and Peekskill City School Districts’ Education Foundations. He was also a lifetime member of the Peekskill Yacht Club and the Mohegan Volunteer Fire Association, where he had more than 75 years of service and was recently honored as the Grand Marshall of their 100th Anniversary Parade.

In his later years, Geis found love and companionship in his marriage to Glenda Rivera. Her presence was a source of joy, comfort, and strength, enriching their lives through travel, good food, and time spent with family and friends. Together, they faced life’s joys and sorrows hand in hand.

According to his family, Geis’ unwavering determination and enthusiasm for life will serve as a lasting source of inspiration for all who knew him. His family and friends will remember his warmth and humor, his endless support and advice, and his devotion to family. He was known for his Shirley Temples, his London Broil, his love of Crystal Gayle, his serenades and dance moves, and making a cocktail that would “put hair on your chest.” Countless memories were made on his beloved Sea Hawk boats, trips to Jupiter, Florida, at Army football games, and on many golf courses over the years. His stories were unforgettable, his history legendary, and his love for family everlasting.

In addition to his wife Glenda, Geis is survived by his daughters, Susan (Tim) Mackey and Debbie June; his grandchildren, Missy (Neil) Stoltzfus, Scott (Erika) Martino, Billy (Michelle) Obenauer, Kelly (Ian) Obenauer-Kelly, Kristie (James) Kibby, and Jacqueline (Tyler) June; his great-grandchildren, Dakota, Kyla, Samara and Sadie Obenauer, Della and Rowan Kelly, Ruby Martino, Eve Stoltzfus, and Khloe and Eli Kibby; and his sister, D. June (Geis) Redman.

Visitation services for Geis will be held Thurs., April 4 and Friday, April 5 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Yorktown Funeral Home in Shrub Oak. A Funeral Service will take place Sat., April 6 at United Methodist Church of Shrub Oak. Interment will follow at Hillside Cemetery in Cortlandt.

Donations can be made in memory of William W. Geis Jr. to any of the following organizations: United Methodist Church of Shrub Oak (1176 E. Main St., Shrub Oak, NY 10588), New York Presbyterian – Hudson Valley Hospital for nursing (1980 Crompond Rd., Cortland Manor, NY 10567), or the William W. Geis Jr. Scholarship Award at Lakeland Central School District (1086 Main St., Shrub Oak, NY 10588).

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