In Memory of Dr. Shaffer


We are profoundly saddened by the loss of our friend and colleague, Ben. It is incredibly hard to lose a man who meant so much to so many people. Ben loved his family dearly and was a devoted father to Emma and Noah. Ben spoke often and with pride about his children and how much he loved to be with them. Ben was also a devoted husband to Jill, who he truly adored and worshiped.

On a professional level, Ben was special. Many of you are aware of Ben’s extraordinary accomplishments as a surgeon, a teacher, and a student of orthopaedics and sports medicine. But his partners had the unique pleasure of working alongside a man who was truly gifted. We knew Ben as a leader who was not only exceptionally talented, but incredibly kind. Ben cared so deeply for his patients that he inspired those around him to work harder and to be better doctors or nurses, or students. When patients succeeded in their goals to return to excel in sports or life, Ben rejoiced as if he himself had succeeded. Ben embraced and cared for his patients as if they were part of his own family. When patients had difficult problems for which no easy solution was available, Ben would not quit until he was certain that he had achieved the best possible result, and never wavered in his commitment to excellence. It fills us with overwhelming sorrow and loss to lose him as a friend and colleague, yet it is imperative that we find a way to stop and remember and appreciate all he brought to this world.

Perhaps one of Ben’s greatest gifts was his incredible passion for education. He worked continuously to not only improve the care of patients in his community through training residents over the last 20 years, but nationally and internationally through training orthopaedic surgeons around the world. The manner in which he did so was awe-inspiring. Ben had an ability to draw members of a faculty or audience into candid discussions of how to best care for difficult problems with levity, humor, and humility. He was a treasure trove of knowledge who meaningfully improved the lives of thousands of people.

We are all fortunate to have had the opportunity to know Ben. Our practice, our community, and our profession are better because of Ben. We will miss his compassion, his humor, his dedication, his example and his humility. But most of all, we will miss his friendship.


The WOSM Partners