Audrey Adell Spear Schafer passed into eternal rest at Chautauqua Nursing & Rehabilitation Center on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, after a lengthy illness.
Born in 1921, she recently celebrated her 101st birthday with friends at St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church in Dunkirk. She was the daughter of Lena (Straight) and Thomas S. Spear of Sinclairville, N.Y., and the great-great-great-granddaughter of village founder, Major Samuel Sinclear (“Sinclearville” was later changed to Sinclairville by the U.S. Post Office).
She was predeceased by two younger siblings: Beatrice (Richard) Williams and Denis (Joyce) Spear.
She survived her husband, Robert C. Schafer, a long time Dunkirk Public Schools Industrial Art Teacher and partner of Schafer Studebaker Sales and Service with his father, Henry and older brother Howard, with Main Street and Lake Shore Drive locations over the years.
She is survived by her daughter, Elizabeth A. (Nicholas) Greten of Estero, Fla.; and three grandchildren: Timothy A. (Erin) Greten (two great-grandchildren), Jenna (Steve) DeVeau (two great-grandchildren) and Melissa (Jeff) Owens (two great-grandchildren). She is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews and their families, as well as by a son, H.T. (Le thi Hong Nhi) Schafer of Seattle, Wash.
Audrey graduated from Sinclairville High School in 1939 and Fredonia State Teachers College in 1943. She taught elementary school in the Williamsville, N.Y. School district until 1946 when she married Robert after his return from U.S. Army service in Europe during World War II. Thereafter she was a full-time homemaker raising two children while her husband worked two jobs.
After the Schafer Studebaker Dealership ended, Audrey had time to indulge her interest. She enjoyed bowling at Modernaire Lanes leagues.
Audrey was a long time member of St. John’s Episcopal Church. Her participation included many years as director of the childcare nursery, Sunday school teacher, member and officer of the women’s group, St. Margaret’s Guild. She also assisted in many church activities where her artistic and other talents were put to good use.
She was a proud member of the Clan Sinclair Association U.S.A. and traveled to Scotland to visit her ancestral home at Roslin, outside Edinburgh. And she painted acrylics. For 25 years she taught painting classes, first the Fredonia Senior Center, and later at the Dunkirk Senior Center. She was a well-known, familiar presence at Western New York Art and Craft shows for decades, manning her own booth showcasing her paintings. She was an ac-tive “birder” for many years with the Lake Erie Bird Club.
Audrey was well known for her love of cats, at one time housing 15 strays. Passersby would see her doing yard work, surrounded by her cats, raking leaves, or planting flowers for a while, before taking time to play with one of her groupies.
Her family, friends and the cats miss her.
Calling hours will be held Sunday, Nov. 27, from 3-4 p.m. at St. John the Baptist Church, corner of West Fourth and Lark Sts., Dunkirk. A funeral service will be held immediately after the calling hours at 4 p.m. Pastor Helen Sam will officiate. Flowers gratefully declined.
Memorials may be made to St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church, 16 W. Fourth St., Dunkirk, NY 14048.
Arrangements are by the McGraw-Kowal Funeral Home.