Ron Hafer (‘61, ‘77), alumnus and former Biola University Chaplain, passed away due to complications from lung cancer, university leaders announced on July 2. The beloved staff member, who devoted 42 years of service to Biola from 1966-2008, was 83. He was a passionate and unrelenting advocate of all things Biola. More than anything, he was a committed follower of Jesus, sharing the good news with countless others.
“Ron influenced generations of Biola students during his decades-long service to the university,” Biola President Barry H. Corey said. “I recall when he asked to meet with me in the Office of the President to talk — not many months after I began in this role — he wanted me to know that his career at Biola was approaching its conclusion. He shared with me that day, and many times since, about the love he had for this university and the belief that our best days are still to come. Ron lived a life of hope, and everyone he met felt that spirit of hope exuding from him.”
Hafer was among the Biola students who transitioned in the 1950s from the Los Angeles campus on 6th and Hope to the La Mirada campus. The legend is, Hafer did a handstand on top of the downtown LA Biola building prior to the move.
After he graduated from Biola, he started his career as an employee of what was then Biola College. He was a sought-after speaker who loved to preach around the country in churches and youth camps.
When he retired in 2008, the Chimes featured him in an article, and the student reporter wrote, “I realized that the reason everyone loves Hafer so much is because he takes time to sit and casually talk with students like me.”
“Like Paul writes to the Christians in Thessalonica, we also say of Ron Hafer: ‘We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ’ (1 Thessalonians 1:3). The gentle, witty and caring Ron Hafer will be remembered in the long history of Biola and in the hearts of our alumni,” said Corey.
A memorial service and luncheon in honor of Hafer’s life will be held in the EV Free Fullerton Church Main Sanctuary from 10:00-11:30 a.m. on August 14, 2021. The Biola community is encouraged to watch the service via livestream. The link to the live stream of the service can be found here, and will also be available after the event.
In lieu of flowers, his family have requested that donations be made to Integrity, a new church plant in Kenya pastored by Josh Amwago, a Biola graduate and long time friend of Hafer’s.
Checks can be made out to EFCA. Please indicate on the check notes that it’s for Integrity Church 2200-5460. Checks can be mailed to: EFCA 901 E. 78th St., Minneapolis, MN 55420-1303.