Joseph A. Schaffer, age 72, passed away on January 7, 2022 at home.
He was born on May 15, 1949 to Joseph L. and Juanita E. Schaffer.
As a boy, Joe worked in the back of his father’s plumbing business as Head Floor Sweeper and Pipe Fitting Sorter.
His training served him well as he went on to a 39-year career as a plumber and pipe fitter and was a proud member of Western Washington UA Local 26 from which he still hails as a member.
Joe attended Kelso High School where he graduated in 1967. He then went to Lower Columbia College where, with the help of Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 695 he completed a five-year apprenticeship which served him very well throughout his life. He jokingly claimed he could use trigonometry that he learned there to apply to his golf game. Final results of this were never disclosed.
Joe served 21 years as a trustee for the 2000+ member Plumbers and Pipefitters Council of the Northwest, until faltering health forced his retirement in November 2012.
Joe also volunteered many hours at St. Peter’s Hospital starting in 2009. He met and made many lasting friendships.
Joe is survived by his wife of 38 years, Theresa C. (Perry) Schaffer of Randle, WA. He met, and after one year of dating, married Theresa in 1984. They were soulmates who had a fun and rewarding marriage. Joe enjoyed golf, softball, and gardening but was never happier than with his wife and their usual four dogs working on his land. His fondest pastime was training and caring for dogs, especially springer spaniels and pound rescue dogs.
Joe took great pleasure in sporting events, and was a lifelong Hilander and Husky. He took great pleasure in watching his grandchildren, nieces and nephews in competition.
Joe is survived by his cherished brother John Schaffer of Portland, Oregon. His sister Dianne (Schaffer) Moore preceded him in death. He reserved a special spot in his heart for his son Joe Jr. and his beloved daughter Jaime Mejia (Raul) of Longview, along with 4 cherished grandchildren--Madelyn, Natalie, and Preston Mejia, and Joey Lenard-Schaffer of Winlock. He also loved his many nieces and nephews. Joe highly valued the many friends he made throughout life.
His beloved papillons became a passion later in life – Jack, Bug and Charlie will miss Joe tremendously.
A funeral mass will be held on January 25 at 11:00 a.m. at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church, 2200 Allen Street, Kelso, Washington.
A Celebration of Joe’s Life will be held this spring.