Ann Sheffer sent this report from Aspen. She wishes to thank her family’s countless friends for their thoughts and prayers, following her brother Doug Sheffer’s tragic death this week in a helicopter accident.
It’s early morning in Colorado — the quiet before the rest of the family begins arriving, and before the snow starts and makes it difficult to get here. In true Aspen fashion we have very little phone or internet connection. So I may not answer you right away if you call or write, as so many of you have.
The next 3 days will be a vigil for Doug. Yesterday a group of friends and family brought his body home and washed and dressed him, in a very moving ceremony. People from the community will sit and read to him as he begins what they call his “natural transition.” I can’t do justice to the philosophy and faith behind this, but know that this is what his family wanted, and Doug would have also.
There will be a memorial on Saturday at the school that he built and loved so much. We expect hundreds of people to attend, given the impact that Doug had on this community. I hope we can create a similar memorial in Westport this summer.
We are overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support from far-flung friends who knew him from growing up in Westport, and understood even then what an amazingly vibrant, funny, adventure-seeking, generous, caring and just plain “good” person he would grow up to be.
We haven’t begun to absorb what his loss will mean. I will write more later, with details of how to make a contribution in Doug’s memory.
Love to you all,
Ann Sheffer and Bill Scheffler