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Robert Shaffer

June 20, 1950 - April 1, 2023
Grawn, MI


Life Story / Obituary


Robert “Doc” Stephan Shaffer, (72), of Grawn, passed away peacefully on Saturday, April 1, 2023 after a short battle with cancer. Doc was born on June 20, 1950 in Traverse City, MI. He graduated from Traverse City Senior High School in 1968 and after graduation joined the United States Navy where he was proud to serve his country as a Hospital Corpsman.

Upon his return to the Traverse City area after his time in the military, Doc began his career in the food service industry. He worked in various Traverse City restaurants including Shield’s, and Freshwater Lodge until his retirement. Doc enjoyed cooking meals and catering for his family and friends, including his famous soups he shared with his late in-laws, Elmer and Lucile Dunham, when they played their Sunday afternoon games of dominoes. Doc’s family looked to him for his expertise and advice on catering buffets for graduation open houses, weddings, and eagerly anticipated his contributions of potluck dishes at family reunions.

In 1998 Doc married Beverly (Dunham) McLean who survives him. Doc and Bev enjoyed their 25 years together traveling, sailing, and visiting antique shops, as well as some gardening together; her vegetables and him cactus. He also enjoyed animals and was ‘staff’ to several cats over the years.

Doc enjoyed target shooting and learning and teaching others about anything that “goes bang”. He never quit trying to learn about things, himself; consequently, his favorite television programs were ones which told how things were made or how they worked, like Mythbusters and Battlebots.

Doc was a collector of old tools. His interests also extended into research and knowledge of military memorabilia. He was so educated on the subject he could point out the inaccuracies of television programming on makes, models, and years of weapons and their history.

In addition to his wife, Doc is survived by his granddaughter, who he adored, Sophia McLean, as well as his step-son Eric (Kelley) McLean, sister-in-law, Rosile Shaffer, nephews, Todd (Karen) Shaffer, Bill Shaffer, Adam (Brooke) Shaffer and many great-nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his mother, Carol Shaffer and his brother, Tim Shaffer.

At Doc’s request, there will be no funeral or memorial service. Any memorial contributions in his memory may be made to the Cherryland Humane Society.

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