April 8, 1964 - May 31, 2004

(aka The Bat / Sciathán Leathair /  ~..~ / vampeleon)

How do I put in words what has gone on in my mind since 31 May?

Johannesburg, South Africa

I read these wonderful messages from Geri’s friends all over the world and before I too can write mine I have to wipe away the tears and stem the sorrow, just a bit, so I can write.

Geri, no matter what, you were still my brother and I miss you so much!  We went through so much together especially when we had to deal first with losing our dear mother and then our father.

No matter what, we were brother and sister, and although we fought like most siblings will at times, we were always there for each other.  I do feel I may have not been there for you in your greatest need and I am truly sorry for that, but I know you are now in a happier place – you are now finally at peace – a peace that seemed to elude you in this lifetime.

Until we meet again, your ‘lil sis ….

I'm thankful to have "known" Gernot in the little way I did by means of sharing a drink over a chat session or on email or the ng's. I guess I'll not be able to get to know him in person like I thought would be inevitable. Just another not so subtle reminder of how short life is - or can be.

Jona (aka Knopgat)

Regardless of his faults he was still like a brother to us and his knowledge and wit will be sadly missed.

Pennsylvania, USA

I remember him responding to me in a car group and it was like hearing from a friend in a bunch of strangers.

Florida, USA
Geri touched a lot of people's lives all over the world, and he meant a lot to a lot of people.  I'll certainly never forget him. Jennifer Jo
Arizona, USA
Ek sal jou mis.

Siochan leat.

Gernot was my first internet friend, and over the years we had many conversations; some funny, some serious, all interesting, and none of which I'll ever forget.  He will be greatly missed.

Florida, USA

Jennifer, Geri, and I used to chat and watch the Africams together in the late evening before I decided to go and visit Geri.  I enjoyed a glorious month with him traveling from Johannesburg to Vic Falls and back in a little motorhome.  We hit a few of the parks and just generally enjoyed the diversity along the way.  I will sorely miss him and his humor. 
I treasure that time in my life, moreso now.

Alaska, USA

Geri was Austrian, and I am German by birth.  His love for Africa is rivaled by mine--but because of politics and one too many burglaries, I left and relocated to the USA/WA state.  I hate the thought not to be able to talk to him anymore.  I shared time with Geri from Jan 1988-Nov 1989, some of it intense because we worked for Willie Zing's safari outfit in the Okavango delta, keeping "Fritzi, the injured hippo" away from our nosey tourists.  Long talks under the balmy skies of Africa, laughs over some dumb-ass thing he or I, or both of us did (like getting out of a landrover packed with fresh killed meat for the camp in the middle of lion land) because we got stuck in the mud and our track lost us for hours.  

Washington, USA

We shared a passion of mine--photography.  Geri actually tried to reload exhausted camera batteries in the middle of the bush--needless to say the camera (belonging to my brother Heiko) was never the same thereafter.  We waited for radio contact at midnights to hear from radio code "Hotel Tango," calling our code "Charlie November" into the otherwise silent African nights.  As the content of various Jim Beam bottles bottomed, philosophies skyrocketed with Geri.  Geri was a good listener as well as conversationalist. I opened my heart to him about my 5 year old son's accidental death and Geri comforted me without fail.

Whether the man was flipping Bratwurst in Hillbrow/Joburg or diving for a lost outboarder in the middle of the Okavango River amidst crocodiles, Geri always cut a good figure.   The Bat Man has gone to his eternal cave.  May he find peace that sometimes eluded him in this life.  Geri, I will miss you and remember you always.