Northwest Alum, Teacher, & Board Member Mike Shafer Passes Away

Grand Island Northwest high school Viking Mascot.

(Grand Island, NE) - Described as a true Viking through and through. One who really did bleed black and gold. That was Mike Shafer or to many Mr. Shafer. The long-time Northwest teacher, coach, and school board member passed away early this week. Monday night loved ones, friends, and former students started sharing words of condolences and memories of Mr. Shafer on social media.

Shafer was a 1971 graduate of Northwest High School who started out at Seedling Mile, at that time was a feeder school to Northwest. Shafer taught social studies at Northwest from 1995 to 2016. Before that, he was actually a welder who worked on the building of the Bob Devaney Sports Center in Lincoln but would find his calling in teaching. After his days as a teacher, Mike Shafer felt his duty to Northwest wasn’t done just yet as he became a school board member in the district from 2017-2020. He even served on the Grand Island City Council for four years.

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While being a teacher at Northwest, his Decade of the 60s class was his favorite class to teach. Shafer was known as the school historian. During the class, he would incorporate the history of Northwest and how the school came about, and his experiences being a part of the high school when it first started. 

At this time memorial services are pending for Mike Shafer.

Below are some comments from former Northwest principal Tim Krupicka and former Superintendent Matt Fisher sharing some thoughts on Mike and how much he meant to not only the school district but the community of Grand Island.

Tim Krupicka Passing Of Mike Shafer 2023

Matt Fisher Passing Of Mike Shafer 2023