Enlisted with rank of rifleman and posted to C Company, 1st Battalion, The Trentham Regiment (The Earl of Liverpool's Own), Trentham Camp, Upper Hutt, 31 May 1915. Marched out from Trentham Camp with unit and entrained for temporary camp established at the Show Grounds, Palmerston North, 10 July 1915.
Found guilty of breaking camp and drunkenness, 13 July 1915: awarded 10 days' confined to barracks.
Moved with unit to new training camp established at Rangiotu, nine miles away from Palmerston North, 15 July 1915.
Unit renamed 1st Battalion, The New Zealand Rifle Brigade (Earl of Liverpool's Own), New Zealand Gazette, 7 October 1915.
Marched out from Rangiotu Camp with unit and entrained for Wellington, 8 October 1915.
Proceeded overseas from Wellington on board HMNZT 'Maunganui', 10 October 1915. Disembarked Suez, Egypt, 15 November 1915.
Embarked from Alexandria with unit and proceeded to port of Mersa Matruh onboard HMS 'Clematis' on detachment of unit to the Western Frontier Force, 19 December 1915. Returned with battalion from Mersa Matruh onboard HMS 'Missir' and disembarked at Alexandria, 18 February 1916.
Found guilty, 24 February 1916, of 1) while on active service being absent without leave from 8:00 am to 9:30 pm, 23 February 1916, and 2) being absent from physical drill parade at 7:00 am, 23 February 1916: forfeited 5 days' pay and 1 days' pay RW.
Proceeded overseas to France from Alexandria on board HMT 'Arcadian', 6 April 1916.
Found guilty by field general courts-martial, 2 August 1916, of drunkenness and being absent without leave: forfeited total of 40 days' pay.
Admitted to No 3 New Zealand Field Ambulance and transferred to 2nd Australian Casualty Clearing Station, in the field, 8 August 1916 (sick - facial paralysis); admitted to No 3 Canadian General Hospital, Boulogne (sick - Bell's Palsy). Evacuated to England onboard HS 'Stad Antwerpen' and admitted to No 2 New Zealand General Hospital, Walton-on-Thames, 25 August 1916. Discharged from No 2 New Zealand General Hospital and taken on strength, New Zealand Convalescent Hospital, Hornchurch, 19 September 1916. Detailed on command to No 2 New Zealand General Hospital, Walton-on-Thames, 23 September 1916.
Found guilty of being absent without leave 10:00 pm to 10:30 pm, 23 September 1916: awarded 2 days' confined to barracks.
Found guilty, 27 September 1916, of drinking beer while in Hospital Blues: awarded 14 days' confined to barracks.
Commenced return to New Zealand from Plymouth on board SS 'Navua', 13 November 1916.
Arrived Port Chalmers, Dunedin, New Zealand, 19 January 1917.
Assessed by medical board, King George V Military Hospital, Rotorua, 6 March 1917: found to have suffered a permanent disability (dilated heart) as a result of shell concussion.
Discharged, no longer physically fit for war service on account of wounds received in action, 27 March 1917.
Description on Final Discharge includes 'Character: Indifferent' and the attached note: 'This soldier's record shows him to have been most impatient of discipline. He has never been charged with any offence of a fraudulent or dishonest nature but cannot be given a better character than indifferent'.
Memorandum from Assistant Director Medical Services to Director General Medical Services, Wellington Military District, dated 21 September 1918, advising receipt of following telegram from Trentham Camp: 'Regret to report death of 23/903 Rfm. Schaeffer, A. C. age 36, religion R.C. diagnosis chronic interstitial nephritis. Died at 3 p.m. on 18 September'. AWMM