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Raymond "Ray" Leroy Shafer

July 19, 1933 August 28, 2018
Raymond "Ray" Leroy Shafer
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Obituary for Raymond "Ray" Leroy Shafer

Raymond "Ray" Leroy Shafer

Raymond "Ray" L. Shafer, 85, a resident for 33 years in Santa Maria, CA, passed away on August 28, 2018. Ray was born at home on a farm in Garrison, Iowa on July 19, 1933. After graduation from high school in 1953 Ray enlisted in the U. S. Army where he was trained as a Nike missile repairman. After his honorable discharge he continued to work on the guided missile programs at Fort MacArthur in San Pedro, CA until 1974. Working for over 10 years as a civilian Quality Assurance Specialist in Palmdale, CA on the Space Shuttle program and 11 years at Vandenberg AFB he ended his 42 years of Federal government service in 1996 when he retired.

Ray and his wife, Judy, were fortunate to witness the historic first launch of the Columbia Space Shuttle in Florida and then flew home to California to witness the first landing of Columbia in April 1981.

Ray was a humble and kind hearted man who was nicknamed "Saint Raymond" by Judy's grandmother for his loving care of her before her death. Despite his numerous health problems and frequent and lengthy hospitalizations, Ray never gave up and truly appreciated the exceptional care he received from the doctors, nurses and staff at Marian Regional Medical Center.

Ray was preceded in death by his parents, Floyd and Gladys Shafer, his beloved sister, Esther Burciaga and his niece, Lois Ann Smith.
Ray is survived by his loving wife of nearly 44 years, Judy Shafer; his dog Bebe ; nephews Charles Smith, (Pat) of Tennessee; and David Smith ,(Lurraine) of Fresno, CA and David's children, Christopher Smith, Ashley Ocegueda and Courtney Scheidt.

Ray requested that no services be held.

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