Elizabeth “Betty” Elyse Ridgeway Shaffer returned to her heavenly home on August 15, 2022, just two days before her 96th birthday. She lived a long life full of contagious laughter that encouraged everyone who was lucky enough to meet her.
Betty was born in Trenton, NJ and raised in Uniontown, PA where she met and married her high school sweetheart Ken. Betty and Ken moved to the Akron area in 1947 where they started their family of 5 and resided for more than 50 years. Betty’s love for her husband and children was evident in her bright smile and sparkling eyes. She started her kids out right by taking them to South Arlington United Methodist Church where she taught Sunday School. She spent most of her life lovingly taking care of other children while raising her own. She loved all dogs – a sweet dog could always make her smile and she loved spoiling the dogs right along with the children. As her children grew older, she went to work for Akron Public Schools as a Librarian for Rimer Grade School in the Kenmore area. She LOVED sharing her love of reading and imagination with the children. She took special pride in bringing kids’imaginations to life, going so far as making her own Mother Goose costume and baking “worm” cookies for ‘How to Eat a Fried Worm’ day. She retired after nearly 25 years of helping children learn to love reading at Rimer. She loved playing games, working in her garden, and doing all kinds of crafts, especially crocheting. She crocheted, all the way to the end of her life – in her last 10+ years living at the Colony Healthcare Center, she crocheted all kinds of blankets and other things for anyone who wanted one. And when it got too difficult for her to enjoy reading, she loved hearing her son read the Daily Bread devotional to her. She passed on her love of reading, crafting, celebrating, and contagious laughter to her children and grandchildren. Everyone who knew her loved her and everyone called her friend.
She is preceded in death by the love of her life and husband of 54 years, Kenneth John Shaffer; daughter Kylene Gaskin, and grandson Jonathan Shaffer. She is survived by her son Gary (Vida) Shaffer, daughter Donna (Gary) Roberts, Grandchildren Shelly (Tom) Keith and Rocky Gaskin, Step-Grandchildren Robert ‘Curt’ Carr and Catherine Curtis, and Great Grandchildren Colin, Abby, Rebecca, Matthew, Declan, and Emma, and numerous nieces, nephews, and friends.
Funeral services will be held at 12:00 Noon Friday, August 19, 2022 at Hopkins Lawver Funeral Home, 547 Canton Road, Akron, OH 44312, with Pastor Caleb Nichols officiating. The family will receive friends from 10:00 – 12:00 Noon Friday, August 19, 2022 at Hopkins Lawver. The family would like to express our thanks for the wonderful help and care given by Colony Healthcare of Tallmadge and by Dr. Mark Smith (who always made her smile). In particular, our special thanks and love to Elizabeth’s dear friend Rochelle, who became like family over the last 10+years of caring for her. If desired, friends may make memorial contributions to your local library, or to Reach Out and Read Ohio at www.reachoutandread.org.