The ex-classmate said it was “highly likely” Mr Knodler was taught by Mr Giorgio, who would often assist “struggling classes”.
Picnic Point High School did not wish to comment.
Emergency services were called to the scene on Tuesday night at Henry Lawson Drive in Peakhurst after Mr Knodler allegedly crossed the median strip in a stolen vehicle, causing a head-on collision.
Mr Giorgio’s wife Gayle Gibson, a teacher at Canterbury Girls’ High School, was killed as well as 66-year-old Carol Chambers. Mr Giorgio and 62-year-old Kim Alden, a fourth person in the car, were injured in the crash and taken to St George Hospital before being released on Wednesday.
Police allege Mr Knodler stole the Toyota Landcruiser early Monday morning before stealing a bottle of Jim Beam from a Dan Murphy’s in Bankstown around midday on Tuesday.
Mr Knodler, who has never held a licence, allegedly blew three times the legal limit – 0.166 – after crashing into the Honda Jazz around 8pm. He was also charged after failing to stop and assist.
Gayle Gibson, one of the two women who lost their lives, has been remembered as a “much-loved” teacher.
Canterbury Girls principal Sue Holden released a statement on Wednesday.
“Unfortunately we have today received some very sad news. Ms Gayle Gibson, a long-standing member of staff, has passed away overnight in a tragic traffic accident. Ms Gibson was a much loved member of staff and a former head teacher. Our sincere condolences go out to her family,” the statement read.
Mr Knodler was charged with offences including two counts of manslaughter, two counts of aggravated dangerous driving causing death, two counts of aggravated dangerous driving causing grievous bodily harm and high-range drink driving.
He will return to court on May 13.
Sarah is a journalist for The Sydney Morning Herald.