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IPFS News Link • Death

Butler Shaffer, R.I.P. By Jane Conger Shaffer

• Jane Shaffer - LewRockwell.Com

My husband, Butler DeLane Shaffer, died of prostate cancer at 3:28 pm on Sunday, December 29.  He had a peaceful transition surrounded by family and love, in a wonderful Burbank hospital where he had been a patient several times.  He always looked forward to their practice of playing lullaby chimes throughout the hospital when a baby is born,  We were with him for his last breath, his last heartbeat.  And an hour later the western sky gave us its most beautiful sunset ever, all purple (his favorite color) and red and gold.

On December 28, our 62nd wedding anniversary, our three daughters told the world on Facebook that Butler's time on earth was limited.  Almost immediately he began to receive dozens of messages of love and appreciation from people whose lives had been touched by his writing, his teaching and his very presence  We read your words to him and felt on some level he heard them.  Thank you all for your messages and know they are helpful to his family.

LRC and the Mises Institute, and especially the people there, meant a lot to Butler.  He appreciated that you made it possible for his ideas, his writings to reach readers all over the world.  His legacy lives on because of you.  It also lives on through his three wonderful daughters and five grandchildren, all of whom share his views on human nature and the human condition.

A British psychiatrist wrote that "Grief is the price we pay for love."  We are paying that price now.  Butler's ashes will be placed in a bench in Wyuka Cemetery in Lincoln NE where we both have ancestors.  The bench is in the oldest part of the cemetery, just inside the entrance and his words on the bench can be seen from the road:  "Civilizations are created by individuals.  They are destroyed by collectives."

Butler had a special vibrant energy and if anyone could send a message from the grave, he would be the one. I am a confirmed skeptic, less spiritual than Butler who occasionally had prophetic dreams and firmly believed in Gremlins when something went wrong.  But, on the day of and the day after his death, we had two strange occurrences that are probably just coincidence, but do make us wonder.  I received an Amazon package sent the day of his death with no paperwork enclosed.  It was a singing bowl, something I would have wanted.  Amazon tracking could give us no information, in fact their records showed it should have been a clothesline and gone to a different address.  And several hours after his death our oldest daughter was on her computer talking with a friend.  Suddenly her iTunes opened up by itself.  Thinking that was weird, she shut it down.  Later she left the room.  Returning to the room she heard music playing.  iTunes was back up playing the Suzanne Vega song "Bound," an album our daughter had bought several years ago, but had never listened to.  She had never heard the song before.  The lyrics are here.  The song ends with the words "When I said: I am bound to you forever, here's what I meant:  I am bound to you forever."

We always said Butler made us think and he made us laugh.  So I know he would appreciate these words from one of our sons-in-law who helped to put things in perspective; given that he was in no discomfort, surrounded by his family and their love.  "…we need to be reminded that this is better than taking an arrow in the chest during the Crusades surrounded by screaming enemies as you lie writhing in the mud."

1 Comments in Response to

Comment by Ernest Hancock
Entered on:

He's still around,... yep, that's all I have to say.