Michael Andrew Haffner, born Jan. 11, 1966, was called home, suddenly and unexpectedly, on Feb. 18, 2020, at his home in Dyea. Michael was the third child born to Ben and Betsy Haffner, of Juneau.
Michael, known to many as Mike or Mikey, lived most of his life in Juneau, but moved to Skagway in September 2008 when he took a job with the Alaska Department of Transportation. He fell in love with Dyea and worked hard toward buying a house and property.
Mike enjoyed being a mechanic and was a bit of a “jack of all trades.” There wasn’t anything he could not do or fix. During his first year in Skagway, he helped many people with their vehicles and house projects. He could do it all: electrical, plumbing, carpentry, anything.
He was an avid collector of cars and trucks, and a variety of other things. If someone needed a part to an old vehicle, Mike was the one to ask. He loved riding his snowmachine and took more than a few of his guests on an unexpected four-wheeler ride along the back roads and river in Dyea. He recently discovered he enjoyed gardening and he, along with several others, put in a large garden at his place in Dyea.
Michael is survived by his children, Christopher Spillman, Samantha Jo (Jo) Haffner (Will Fischer), Michael Andrew (Andy) Haffner, and their mother Tari Haffner. He is also survived by his sisters, Lisa Haffner-Ritter (Ray), Heather Olson (Kevin), and his brother Matthew Haffner (Bonny). Others he leaves behind include his unofficial foster kids Shonda, Jason, Gene and De; best friend Michele Kirk; close friends Skip Stoddard and Jeannie Etue; and many more people, including extended family, too numerous to list.
He was preceded in death by his mother and father, Ben and Betsy Haffner, and his brother Mark Haffner.
Michael was a kindhearted soul with a great deal of compassion for others. He was generous with his time and never failed to help someone if he could. He lived by the motto of treating others right and believed in doing what he thought was the right thing, no matter what. Mike had big dreams and those dreams were starting to become reality for him.
A memorial service is tentatively planned for mid-April. Details will be posted to the Skagway Swap facebook page as the family figures them out. His ashes will be spread in a few of his favorite places by his children in July.
In lieu of donations or flowers, his children would love to hear your favorite memories of Michael. You can email stories to firstname.lastname@example.org or through snail mail to Haffner Family 2809 Peters Lane, Juneau, AK 99801.