Students remember classmate, teacher killed in separate accident - News, Weather & Sports

Students remember classmate, teacher killed in separate accidents

Jimmy Bittner (Source: Family photo) Jimmy Bittner (Source: Family photo)
Patty Shaffer (Source: South Central Senior/Junior High School) Patty Shaffer (Source: South Central Senior/Junior High School)

ELIZABETH, IN (WAVE) – Within days, South Central Junior/Senior High School lost two valuable members of its school community.

As students return to school from fall break, they’re taking time to remember the lives of senior Jimmy Bittner and teacher Patty Shaffer, killed in separate accidents.

Bittner was swept into the ocean off the coast of Hatteras Island, NC Thursday. 

Friends said Bittner knew no strangers.
“He sat at my table the first day of school and we’ve been friends ever since,” senior Miranda Kiper said.

“As you’ve seen here, the kid was loved by everybody, he was just that type of boy,” J.C. Bittner said about his grandson. “He was a kid you just couldn’t resist.”  

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After searching several days, crews found his body.
“About 20 miles down the island, people were out on the pier and they had seen something in the water, Bittner said. "It turned out to be — I call him little Jim."
South Central students lost their beloved teacher and volleyball coach, Patty Shaffer to an ATV crash on October 9.
“She was a very strong woman," Kiper said. "She knew what she was doing with everything she did with her teaching degree and with her volleyball skills and just being a mother. She knew how to be there for somebody."

Principal David Beaver said the school community will heal in time.
“We have a strong faculty, strong students and a strong community that will help them get through the grieving process and process all of this,” Beaver said.

As they put the two individuals to rest in their hearts, they’re sticking together, holding tight to those around them.
“Our church is wonderful, these kids have been wonderful,” Bittner added.

“We’re going to tough it out, do what Patty says and ‘clean it up, ladies,’” Kiper said.

WATCH: Sharon Yoo’s report

A memorial service will be held for Jimmy Bittner at Parkwood Elementary School in Clarksville at 6:30 p.m. Monday. 

Patty Shaffer’s funeral services already have taken place. She is survived by three children.

A Go Fund Me account has been set up for her children. It can be found by clicking here. At last check, it had reached more than $14,000 of its $50,000 goal.
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