The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

RAY SHAFER - PART 11 Ninety Years of Memories

Service to Others and Allegiance to U.S.A.-One Nation Under God

By Dessa Rodeffer, Quill Publisher

Ray Shafer returned home from WWII and married Mary Frances Boyer, which he says was - "a perfect match". He farmed, was a carpenter, a scoutmaster, valued his family, his community, and his country.

He lives life more aware of what is going on around him, and says it is important to see that what he had fought for in Europe is not lost here at home...heeding General Dwight Eisenhower's warning that if America is ever defeated, it will be defeated from within.

He has passed on the lessons he has learned and the value that is in every opportunity set before him.

He knows life is a gift, and what we have been given here in America is an opportunity that isn't available in all countries. If we don't protect it and watch over it, it could be taken away by another power-hungry Hitler. He worrys about the America he loves. He hopes he can encourage the young people to honor what they have, become strong and aware of what is around them, and step out and make a difference. He hopes he can encourage the adults to get involved in elections and protecting our homeland as the enemy may be closer than you think.

Throughout everything he touches in his life, the flashbacks of war remain and the awareness that what you cherish can be taken from you. He has seen people who show no mercy and can overpower the unprepared, the weak, the innocent with no remorse. Ray has also seen many German soldiers quickly surrender who were glad to see Americans, it seemed, and who did not want to be in the war they were forced to serve in.

Ray said, "Before the war, I didn't pay too much attention of who got elected, but since then, I really pay attention. To me, I'm a conservative, and that's how I would vote-Republican, because they've been more conservative consistantly.

"Always pay attention to what's going on around you. Not everyone is honest.

"People ought to be aware of what is going on around you at all times, local or in Washington D.C..

"Listen and use your common sense to what is real and to what is propaganda. The government can not give all things to all people. We are the government and we have elected people that aren't fit to be in their positions.

"And for the U.S. Constitution, I believe God must have had a hand in it. Our history and Americanism needs to be taught again. I teach it in our scouts," Ray said.

Ray and Mary Frances raised three children: Kathy, Brad, and Mark.

Kathy is married to Paul Scott Gibb and lives in Biggsville. They have two daughters: Pauline (Joe) live in the Quad Cities, and Mary (Brian) Zielke live in Springfield.

Brad is married to Charlotte and lives in Biggsville. They have three children Stephanie (Jamie) Jarret of Burlington, IA, Nicholas (Amy) of Burlington, IA and Travis (Morgan) of Wisconsin. Mark is married to LeAnne and lives in Biggsville. They have two children Brenen and Jenna. From his 7 grandchildren, they have given Ray 11 great grandchildren.

(to continue next week)