Cover photo for Warren Tremlett Chaffey's Obituary
Warren Tremlett Chaffey Profile Photo

Warren Tremlett Chaffey

d. February 9, 2012

Warren Tremlett Chaffey, the son of Aton Warren and Emmeline Irene (Stimers) Chaffey, was born on April 29, 1925, in Oakland, California. After graduating from Castlemont High School in Oakland in June 1943, he joined the United States Air Force, and served until 1946. He then attended the California College of Arts and Crafts-Oakland, from which he received his Bachelors degree in Education in 1950. Warren’s Air Force service was reactivated in 1950 for the Korean War, and he later elected to reenlist. He became a career intelligence analyst and was most proud of his daily briefings to President Lyndon Johnson. Warren also continued to develop his art during this time.

On April 27, 1960, Warren married Patricia Ann O’Neill at Beale Air Force Base in California. Following his retirement from the service on July 31, 1969, Warren completed his Masters degree in Special Education through San Francisco State University. In 1970, he began teaching Special Education at the Ralph Harmon School for Mentally Handicapped in Richmond, California. He and Patricia moved to Harlan, Iowa, in 1973, where he took a position as a special education teacher in the Harlan Community School system. He continued in this position until his retirement in 1985. Warren’s retirement allowed him return to his love of art as a painter and ceramic artist, and for the first time, he sold his paintings. After Patricia’s death on July 3, 2007, Warren moved to Lancaster, California to be near his three children.

Warren was a member of St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Harlan, Iowa. He was also a member of the Harlan Kiwanis (Golden K) Club, Knights of Columbus, Tall Korn Kampers (Denison, Iowa), and was the past president of the Shelby County Historical Society. He loved to read and care for his cat, Mik.

Warren T. Chaffey died on Thursday, February 9, 2012, in Lancaster, California, having reached the age of 86 years, 9 months, and 11 days.

Warren was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Patricia Chaffey; and an infant brother. He is survived by two daughters, Dale Avery of Quartz Hill, California, and Valerie Fontaine of Los Angeles, California; one son, David (Laurie) Chaffey of Palmdale, California; one sister, Lettie Wing of Walnut Creek, California; seven grandchildren; one great-grandchild; and other relatives and friends.

Memorial Mass was held on Friday, March 30, 2012, at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Harlan, Iowa, with Father John Frost celebrating. Musicians were Kate Kohorst and Jan Rau. The Color Guard was provided by the Helmer Reyelt American Legion Post #150 of Harlan. The Burmeister-Johannsen Funeral Home in Harlan was in charge of the arrangements. Condolences may be left online at In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Harlan Golden K Club.

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