Patricia Emeline Shaffer

1 entry
  • "Patty: You will always be in my heart. It was a privilege..."
    - Judy Childers
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September 27, 1924 January 14, 2019
Patty Shaffer died peacefully on Monday, January 14, 2019 with family members by her side. Born on September 27, 1924 in Nampa, Idaho, Patty was the second child of Loran L. and Maud Rains Kline. Patty and her brother John were raised in Ontario, Oregon and spent summers on Payette Lake at McCall, Idaho. It was at summer camp, as a teenager, that Patty asked Christ to be her savior. Her faith in God would sustain her throughout her life. Patty was active in Bible Studies at the First Presbyterian Church where she was a member for 50 years.
Supported by her parents, Patty took flying lessons in high school and received her pilot's license in 1943, the same year she graduated from Ontario High School. In September 1944, she enlisted in the United States Navy and traveled across the country to WAVE training at Hunter College in New York City. Patty was then stationed at North Island Air Station, Coronado, San Diego. Patty worked as an air traffic controller, helping to train aircraft carrier pilots.
After her discharge in 1946, Patty enrolled at the College of Idaho and it was there that she met and married Reece Glenn Shaffer on June 30th, 1948. They both served in the Korean conflict reserves after college and moved to Seattle when Reece was called to active duty. When he was discharged, they returned to Caldwell, Idaho, the place they met and would call their home until 1968. It was here that they began to raise their six children. A highlight of Patty's life was learning to ski at age 40. She received the "Royal Cup" for Bogus Basin Skier of the Year in 1964, and eventually became a professional instructor.
Patty was remarkably industrious and in addition to raising her family, would find time to cook beautiful meals and preserve the bounties of the summer season in jars, filling the cellar with foods for winter. She worked to enrich the interests of her children with lessons in music, swimming and dance. She encouraged each child to participate in boy and girl scouts and summer camps. There were so many friendships formed along the way and the bonds of these shared experiences forged a larger extended family.
In 1969, Patty and Reece moved their family to Colorado. They lived in Colorado Springs for the rest of their lives. Patty kept her love of skiing, exploring most of the resorts in Colorado, and many in Idaho and Utah. She continued to teach skiing as well, starting at the Broadmoor and ending at Copper Mountain Resort where she taught until the age of 76.
Always true to her roots, Patty found a way to turn her love of preserving into a business, when her children were mostly grown. She started in 1975 with her famous dill pickles, attending small craft shows and eventually sold an astonishing array of pickles, jams, jellies, chutneys, conserves and chow chows under the name of Patty's Pantry. She continued to grow her business and products until her retirement, and sale of the business, in 1995.
Patty is predeceased by her brother, John (2012), husband, Reece (1994) and son-in-law, Kent (2016). She is survived by her six children: John Shaffer of San Antonio, Texas, Nancy Steward (David) of Colorado Springs, Colorado, Julia Florea (Randy) of Tualatin Oregon, Martha Wikstrom (Martin) of London, England, Mary Shaffer (Kent Perelman) of Missoula, Montana and David Shaffer of Heber City, Utah. In addition she is survived by eight grandchildren, two nephews and three nieces.
Patty taught us to love adventure, the natural world, a sense of self-reliance, good manners and values, how to work hard and have fun in the process, to laugh, that anything worth doing was worth doing well and the power of positive thinking. We will miss her terribly, but carry her spirit with us and will keep her alive in our hearts and stories. A celebration of life will be held on Friday, February 8th, at 1:00 pm in the Cathedral Room at the First Presbyterian Church. Memorial gifts may be made to Pikes Peak Hospice, which provided so much comfort and care in her last days. There will be a family memorial for Reece and Patty in Idaho this summer.

Published in The Gazette on Feb. 3, 2019
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