BRADENTON - Twenty-one-year-old Bradenton Resident Dan Schaffer was tragically struck and killed on I-75 over the weekend. His cousin Nicole Zatorski remembers some of his best traits.

"He was charismatic, gentle; he was loving, giving, funny," Zatorski said.

Dan was an electrician working in the Bradenton area.

"He’s a very determined, strong, hard worker," Dan's Cousin, Katey Schaffer, said.

Dan was one of four brothers. Originally from New Jersey, he, his parents and his youngest brother were all Suncoast residents. Dan’s cousins say he loved fishing and building sandcastles. One thing they’ll miss most is Dan’s infectious laugh.

“It would just light up the room with other people laughing," Katey said. "I can’t even describe it; his laugh is just pure medicine."

Though he was busy working, his cousin Jess says Dan made time to put others first.

"He always wanted to help others, and if you’re having a bad day, he’d always try to cheer you up," Jess Schaffer said.

Zatorski says though Dan’s life was short, his impact was great.

“He touched so many lives," Zatorski said. "Somebody said about him, 'You don’t have a good friend until you’ve met Dan.' He just loved life and he loved his family so much.”

Jess Schaffer started a GoFundMe Page


to help Dan's parents with funeral costs.