Richard Shafer – 1937

2014HOFshaferDick “PeeWee” Shafer played three sports at Stivers: basketball and baseball, but football was by far his best game. At 5’9”, 160 pounds, he was a triple threat who could run, pass, and block but added a fourth dimension with his kicking skill. He was the city’s best punter and place kicker. Tough and fleet, he could score from any distance. Stivers Hall of Fame Coach Hawk English said that Dick was the city’s best football player. All-City as a junior and senior, he led Stivers to the city football championship in 1936 and was also a member of the Stivers basketball championship squad. Among his teammates were Hall of Famers Lee Fenner and Norb Zimmerman. Playing during the Great Depression, Stivers could no longer afford their annual road trips to play against the best schools in Detroit, Toledo, Louisville, and other out of district venues. The Stivers vs. Steele game on Thanksgiving Day remained this town’s biggest sporting event and would draw over 8000 fans to the University of Dayton Stadium. The Tigers had dominated this rivalry which began in 1908. In 1935 Stivers won 26-0, but was upset by Steele and Tuffy Brooks by the score of 7-0 in 1936. In both those years, PeeWee Shafer was selected to the All-City team.

After high school Dick married his classmate and sweetheart Opal Hetzel. They had two children, Richard, Jr. and Darlene (now McCune).

During WWII, Dick entered the navy and was involved in an automobile accident which left him severely disabled and which led to his early death at the age of 47.2014HOFshafer22014HOFshafer3


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