A public thank you from the Shafer family

To the editor:

The Shafer family would like to thank the Salem community for its many kindnesses and generosity following the death of Charles Shafer.

First, we must thank the Salem Police Department and FOP for their efforts in honoring Charles. Chief Panezott and his force went beyond the call of duty and showed a sense of family that is at the heart of the brotherhood of those who serve. Their spouses, children and families have joined in that support.

Second, we must thank the greater law enforcement and safety service community; the many city workers and administration; and their families for honoring Charles with their time and talents.

We are indebted to the Salem City Schools and the Salem Community Center for providing us with the spaces to host a large funeral and dinner. The family is grateful for the work of the local media. You informed the community about the service and its logistics, while respecting the family’s need for privacy during a very public event.

Finally, we would like to thank the citizenry of Salem. Hundreds of you paid your respects to Charles at the calling hours and hundreds more lined the streets for the procession. The family looked out the window during the drive and saw children waving flags, men saluting and mothers with their hands on their hearts.

People have been extraordinarily generous to the FOP fund for the family and to the Salem Community Foundation. The gifts, both tangible and monetary, are making a difference for a family with an uncertain future.

It is hard not to feel God’s grace — even in a time of grief — when so many people are lifting you up with love, respect and caring. We are very proud to be Salem Quakers.

With much gratitude,

The Charles “Chaz” Edward Shafer family,

Salem

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