Warren Gene Shaffer, 74, of Nampa, Idaho and a former Sunnyside resident passed away on Monday, Dec. 19, 2011, at his home surrounded by his family and friends after a short battle with cancer.
Warren was born Oct. 12, 1937 in Scottsbluff, Neb.
He traveled by train with his mother and two sisters, when he was six-weeks-old to the Lodi, Calif. area, where his father was working. From there, they moved around to Oregon, Washington and Idaho.
Warren was an intelligent man. At 17, he quit school in Marsing to join the U.S. Navy, where he received his GED.
He enjoyed recalling the time he took the Navy Aptitude exam with 1,000 other enlistees and ended up having the highest score. The officers pulled him aside and accused him of cheating. After several questions, they realized that his score was accurate and was then put in charge of a group of enlisted men who were older and of larger physique (he was only 117 lbs. at the time).
Warren served aboard the USS Los Angeles as a Fire Control Tech and was in the U.S. Navy a total of three years, eight months and 29 days. After being honorably discharged in 1958, he returned to Nampa and went to work for Cold Cache Mfg as a sheet metal worker.
On Jun 29, 1963 he married Fern Johnson and a year later, they moved to the Oakland-Berkley area with his job, where he was in charge of 200 employees. The next move was to the San Joaquin Valley and a new adventure of raising button quail and parakeets commercially.
After being married eight and a half years, Warren and Fern were blessed with two daughters, Kelli in 1971 and Kathy in 1974.
Another move in 1975 took the family to Sunnyside to be closer to all four grandparents. They purchased their home/property and subsequently purchased and opened Sunnyside Tent & Awning, where they worked side-by-side for 24 years.
Warren was a man of many talents. Customers would bring in items in need of repair and he would fix it, build it or design it. He was always looking for ways to make everything better, stronger, or more efficient. He was proud of the fact that in all the years he ran the business, he only had one customer complaint. He advised the client that their idea wouldn't work, yet he still moved forward as they wanted in the project. When it failed and the client returned, he refunded his money. Warren was always
a fair man. Eventually, they added manufacturing asparagus cutting equipment and continue to make it to this day.
He always enjoyed Friday nights when friends and family would come to the shop for "choir practice". The shop was the gathering place for many celebrations. Everyone was welcome to join for the food and fun. The shop was the one thing he missed having when he made the move back to Nampa in 2000.
His entertainment for many years was the getaways to casinos and short trips in the motorhome.
With all his lifetime accomplishments, he was also a very loving grandpa to Kati, Devan, Phillip, Chasey, Brooklyn, Edik, and his great-grandson, Jayden.
He is survived by his wife, Fern of 48 years; daughters, Kelli Kierpiec and Kathy Redmon; sister-in-law, Evelyn Parker; and many nieces and nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Phil and Sarah Shaffer; an infant brother, Stanley; and two sisters, Aldora Golden and Nedra Prouty.
At Warren's request, there will be no formal services, however a Celebration of Life will be held Dec. 31, 2011, from 1 to 4 p.m. at their home in Nampa.
We invite his friends and family to attend. An additional celebration will be held Jan. 8, 2012, from 1 to 4 p.m. at the VFW in Sunnyside
The family expresses their gratitude to Heart and Home Hospice for their endless help and support. The family also extends a special thank you to Dave Tomey PA, a very dear friend with Trinity Family Medicine.
Crematory Society of Idaho is in charge of arrangements.