Harley G. Shaffer 88, of Rossville, IN, died at 5:45 a.m. Thursday, December 29, 2011 at I.U. Health, Lafayette, IN. Born August 20, 1923 near Geetingsville, IN to Eldo M. & L. Opal (Lauchner) Shaffer. He married Billie Albright on July 27, 1950 and she preceded him in death on August 9, 1984. He then married Nondas (Luper) Gochenour on November 26, 1988 and she survives. Mr. Shaffer was a 1942 graduate of Rossville High School. He had lived near Geetingsville for 25 years, near Colfax for 36 years and in Rossville since 1988. A veteran of the U.S. Army, he served from 1943-1946 during WWII near London, England. Mr. Shaffer was a Process Inspector for Allison Transmission Division of GMC in Indianapolis for 30 years, retiring in 1979. He was a member of the Geetingsville Presbyterian Church and the Allison 944 Retiree Club in Indianapolis.
Harley had a great interest in American History and the following is an excerpt from an interview about his WWII experience on D-Day (June 6, 1944).
“We knew something was brewing.” explained Harley Shaffer of Rossville. “But we didn’t ask questions. It was a saying, ‘Loose lips sink ships.’” Shaffer was assigned to a transport support group near London. It was their responsibility to program and schedule supplies and troops to the southern ports at a precise time. “England was in a black-out, and most travel was done at night,” he explained. “Accuracy was vital after the invasion so our troops could have supply and replacements when needed. “For three weeks we were on 24-hour duty.” One of those days stood out from the rest. “On D-Day morning I was awakened about daybreak with air traffic overhead,” he explained. “The sky was completely covered with bombers and fighter planes. It was a sight I’ll always remember.”
Visitation and Services
Services will be 12 Noon, Saturday, December 31, 2011 at the Green Lawn Cemetery Chapel. Mae Leech, Pastor will officiate. Friends may call there from 11 a.m. to 12 Noon, prior to the service. Burial will be in Green Lawn Cemetery. At his request, in lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Geetingsville Presbyterian Church or charity of choice.
Wife: Nondas L. Shaffer of Rossville
Son: Gerald H. (Merianne) Shaffer of Elkhart
2 Step Daughters: Kathleen K. (Sam) Goodwin of Avon and Joyce A. (Jerry) McElroy of Frankfort
1 Granddaughter – Katherine Shaffer
He was preceded in death by his parents, wife Billie, 2 brothers, 3 sisters and son, Larry E. Shaffer in 2001.