Athens musician loses battle with cancer

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A well-known Athens musician, chef and friend to many passed away the morning of Saturday, Oct. 15 after a battle against cancer. 

Damien Schaefer was largely known for the past few years as a leader in the food and drink scene in Athens and beyond – but he’s also known for his music. 

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“His first forays into Athens culture came over two decades ago when he was an undergrad at UGA. His two main musical projects in the 1990s were the pop-punk trio The Pull Outs and the second-wave emo band The Walt Lariat,” according to an article in Flagpole Magazine.

“Damien’s void is one that will never be filled, because he was one-of-a-kind,” his obituary reads on the Phoenix Funeral Services website

“He taught himself to be a world class chef by being curious and cooking with friends. He was in a totally legit metal band. He designed websites for REM and Green Day. He built his own house. He put the adventure in the ‘Buford Highway Adventure Club’. He launched a line of beers that was on-its-way to being turned into a brewery and pizzeria. And he faced cancer with optimism and vigor as only he could. He lived a life of enthusiasm and intentionality and kindness. And he was a living personification of what we all hope to be.”

Information on a memorial service for Damien can be found here

His friends also hosted an oyster roast and toast to Schaefer Thursday night, according to a Facebook post. The event, which was posted to Damien’s Facebook page, was held from 4 p.m. until midnight at The Tree Room. The invite said beer and food would be provided and encouraged attendees to bring champagne.