Fleet Air Arm Museum honours Windy Geale

Published on Ms Dallas McMaugh (author), ABIS Sarah Williams (photographer)

Location(s): Fleet Air Arm Museum, Nowra

Topic(s): Fleet Air Arm Museum, Naval Heritage and History

Memorabilia of the late Lieutenant Commander Robert Edward Norman 'Windy' Geale, MBE, RAN (Retd), donated by the Geale family to the Fleet Air Arm Museum, Nowra, New South Wales. (photo: ABIS Sarah Williams)
Memorabilia of the late Lieutenant Commander Robert Edward Norman 'Windy' Geale, MBE, RAN (Retd), donated by the Geale family to the Fleet Air Arm Museum, Nowra, New South Wales.

The Windy Geale Archive and Library was named at a ceremony at the Fleet Air Arm Museum in Nowra on 25 July in a fitting tribute to a man known for his encyclopaedic knowledge of the people, places and events associated with the Fleet Air Arm.

Born Robert Edward Norman Geale in Ontario in 1925, Windy forged a significant navy career, with service to three navies over his lifetime. When he retired from the Royal Australian Navy in 1985 Windy worked as Honorary Historian to the Fleet Air Arm Museum until his death in 2005.

Mrs Kit Geale, wife of the late Robert Edward Norman ‘Windy’ Geale MBE, RAN (Retd) and Commodore Fleet Air Arm, CDRE Vince Di Pietro CSC, RAN, at the opening of the Windy Geale Archival Library at the Fleet Air Arm Museum, Nowra, New South Wales.

Mrs Kit Geale, wife of the late Robert Edward Norman 'Windy' Geale MBE, RAN (Retd) and Commodore Fleet Air Arm, CDRE Vince Di Pietro CSC, RAN, at the opening of the Windy Geale Archival Library at the Fleet Air Arm Museum, Nowra, New South Wales.

Mrs Kit Geale, wife of the late Robert Edward Norman 'Windy' Geale MBE, RAN (Retd) and Commodore Fleet Air Arm, CDRE Vince Di Pietro CSC, RAN, at the opening of the Windy Geale Archival Library at the Fleet Air Arm Museum, Nowra, New South Wales.

His diligence ensured that invaluable research material remained available for historians, individuals and institutions seeking detailed information about the history of the Fleet Air Arm. 

Speaking at the ceremony Commander Fleet Air Arm, Commodore Vince Di Pietro said that the many facets of the Museum’s collection were very much an expression of, not just history, but history told through personal experience. 

“What Windy was putting together here were actually experiences of his life, and this archive and collection attests not only to Windy’s own contribution, but to what he considered to be a most worthwhile venture, which was naval aviation.” 

“As a result of Windy’s efforts future generations of Australians will more fully understand the role of the Fleet Air Arm’s service to the nation,” Commodore Di Pietro said.

Additional imagery is available at http://images.navy.gov.au/S20130888.