MAKANDA - Elden Shaffner, age 73, was in a car accident in Pocahontas, Arkansas with his wife, Janet (Chadwick) Shaffner on April 12, 2022. Elden passed away at the scene while Janet was flown to Memphis Regional One Health Trauma Center in Memphis, Tennessee where she succumbed to her injuries.
Elden was born on March 27, 1949 in Robinson, Illinois to Oscar Shaffner and Anna Jean (McCollum) Shaffner. Elden married Janet (Chadwick) Shaffner on June 12, 1971 in Makanda, Illinois at Oak Grove Methodist Church.
Elden attended Southern Illinois University Carbondale and received a bachelor’s degree while working on the SIU Farms as a student worker. After graduating, he was employed as the farm manager for SIU and remained there until he retired in 1999/2000. After retirement, he became employed at Rural King as a sales associate sharing his farming knowledge with others. He was a deacon at Union Hill Christian Church and led part of the Sunday school service. He was also the president of the Rowan Cemetery Board where he helped to ensure the cemetery was properly maintained.
Elden was an avid outdoorsman who loved to hunt, fish, and trap. He also loved to hunt mushrooms and ginseng. He could often be found outside enjoying nature and keeping his yard looking immaculate. He also enjoyed passing the love of the outdoors on to his grandkids, Nathanael and Kara. Elden enjoyed being a farmer, planting corn and soybeans and maintaining a large garden. He was always working the soil, planting, weeding, watering, and harvesting when it was the season; he always had vegetables to share with others. In recent years, he took up woodworking as a hobby, making many different items to decorate the yard and give away to family and friends. He was always looking for new ideas and it brought him great joy to be able to share these creations with others. During his free time, Elden was an avid Cardinals fan. When the Cardinals were playing, he could be found watching them on television or listening to them on the radio as he worked.
Elden had a great sense of humor and would often crack himself up making “dad jokes,” or even telling jokes and funny stories at church. He was generous with his time and resources and was quick to offer help wherever he saw a need. Elden was never one to just sit around, and would always keep himself busy. One could often find Elden outside working in the garden, cleaning up the wooded area of his property, woodworking, working on his farm equipment, or mowing his or someone else’s yard; sometimes he did not even take a break to eat.
Elden is survived by his daughters and sons-in-law, Kimberly & Michael Maddox of College Station, Texas; Penny & William Burnside of Makanda, Illinois; and by his grandchildren Nathanael Maddox and Kara Burnside. He is also survived by his siblings and their spouses, Marilyn (Shaffner) Collier of Martinsville, Illinois; Kenneth & Julene (Cline) Shaffner of West Union, Illinois; Sharon (Coryell) Shaffner of West Union, Illinois; and Myron Shaffner of West Union, Illinois. He is also survived by several nieces, nephews, and cousins.
He was preceded in death by Oscar Shaffner (Father), Anna Jean (McCollum) Shaffner (Mother), Stanley Shaffner (Brother), Gerald Shaffner (Brother), David (Jim) Collier (Brother-in-law), Linda (Reynolds) Shaffner (Sister-in-law), and Betty (Geoff) Shaffner (Sister-in-law).
Visitation for Elden will be held on Monday, April 25, 2022 from 5:00pm to 8:00pm at Meredith Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 26, 2022, at the funeral home with Reverend Gerald Holmes officiating. Burial will follow at Rowan Cemetery in Makanda, Illinois.
Memorials may be made in Elden’s name to Union Hill Christian Church or Rowan Cemetery and will be accepted at the funeral home.
Meredith Funeral Home in Carbondale assisted the family with arrangements. To leave a story or memory of Elden visit www.meredithfh.com